The East-European Social-Democratic Youth Forum held a coordination council meeting in Kiev–Ukraine June 6-8 to discuss the sole issue of who will chair the forum in the coming year. The Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) Youth Organization of Armenia will be chairing the body in 2003-2004.
"Based on the by-laws of the Forum–organizations participating in the Forum have the right to chair the body for one year. This year–considering the experience of the ARF and its international involvement in Socialist International–the body decided that the ARF Youth of Armenia will assume the chairmanship of the Forum," explained ARF Youth of Armenia Central Executive member Mher Melkonian–adding that representatives of all countries present voted for ARF youth’s chairmanship–with the exception of Azerbaijan. On other occasions–Azerbaijan has pledged participation in the Forum–but has never shown up.
Ten countries and seventeen organizations are full-fledged members of the Forum; five countries–Croatia–France–Germany–Hungary Poland–and a Ukranian socialist party hold observer status.
The ARF Youth of Armenia will assume its leadership role during the first session of the Forum to convene in Armenia in August. "During that session–members of the Forum will be in Armenia to hold debates–and round table discussions," said Melkonian.