Karine Markosyan

Developing Effective Responses to Drug Use and HIV in Armenia: 

Re-Orienting Drug Policies Towards Harm Reduction

2004 Fellowship
Project Proposal
Tatul Hakobyan
Aramayis Kocharyan

Interim Activity Report
Interim Research Paper
Interim Policy Paper
Final Activity Report
Final Research Paper
Final Policy Paper
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"The basic principles of harm reduction begin with the understanding that drugs are here to stay. There will never be a drug-free society, and in fact there has never been a drug-free society in civilized human history. Our challenge is not how to eliminate drugs from our midst . . . [but] to learn to live with drugs in such a way that they cause the least possible harm.”

Ethan Nadelmann, Executive Director, Lindesmith Center-Drug Policy Foundation

“A colleague of mine has remarked that the biggest
risk factor for HIV is politicians. He’s right.”

Jean-Paul Grund, Harm Reduction Expert in  "Drugs, AIDS and Harm Reduction"

If one is against the reduction of harm,
what in the world is one for?

Robert Newman in “Harm Reduction News”, 2003


The spread of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection through injection drug use (IDU) is an increasingly serious public health problem in some countries of the former Soviet Union (fSU).  Decisive policy action at the national level is needed for an effective response to HIV and injecting drug use.

The purpose of this project has been to analyze policy responses to drugs, drug users and HIV in Armenia and its conflicts with the international law.  The research and policy papers provide an overview of the challenges to effective responses to drug use and HIV in Armenia, outline the rationale for adopting public health-oriented approaches to the problems of drug use and HIV, provide justification/evidence that the new approaches would be consistent with the international law and propose a number of policy recommendations for the promotion of health approaches vs. law enforcement.

 The page has been updated on June, 2005