The Helsinki Association for Human Rights (NGO) was founded by a group of human rights activists and was registered in the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Armenia, in April 1997. The founder and president of the organization was the late Mikael Danielyan. The Association carries out its activity in accordance with the “Agreement on Cooperation and Security in Europe” signed in Helsinki in August, 1975, and the organization's Charter. The organization has a branch in Vanadzor.
The Association deals with human rights matters and does not have political, religious or national orientation. The sole mission is to protect human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the right to freedom of expression, freedom of religion, the right to assemby and peaceful assembly, in particular in courts, prisons, psychiatric institutions and the army. It also monitors whether the Republic of Armenia upholds its obligations under ratified international human rights treaties and agreements. The organization has implemented more than a dozen projects and provides advocacy and free legal advice to the public.
As the result of the successful spread of democratic values within civil society, the Association was awarded with a diploma of “Democracy and Civil Society” by the US and the EU on May 18, 1998. To celebrate his many years of relentless service to the human rights cause, particularly for his advocacy services during the controversial political events of 2008, M. Danielyan was granted the “Freedom Defender” Award in January 2009.
The organization collaborates with leading national and international organizations, including donor organizations that operate in the field of human rights and democracy, as well as with diplomatic missions accredited in the Republic of Armenia, with whom many programs have been successfully implemented.