Armenia Politics

Free speech costs 25.665.100 drams in Armenia

The administrative war launched from October 14, 2007 by RA State bodies against the Gyumri GALA (Independent Information Channel of Gyumri) TV company is coming to a close, and this last free TV channel in Armenia will soon be forced to pay 25 million Armenian drams for making use of its Constitutional right of freedom of speech.
Having led a disparate campaign of protecting GALA’s rights via a series of court proceedings, petitions, demonstrations and having lost all confidence in the Judicial system of Armenia, the Headquarters of Freedom of Speech and GALA TV Protection has issued the following call, directed at all those, who care about the Freedom of Speech in this country:

Dear Friends, bank accounts have been opened in the name of GALA TV founder, where contributions are requested from various regions of Armenia as well as from our compatriots and sympathetic people from around the world. By contributing to these accounts you will help pay the price of Free Speech in Armenia – which is 25.665.100 drams (around $ 84,200 US). This amount, which exceeds 3 year earnings of this small regional TV company, is indeed a small price to pay for the noble cause of protecting our most basic human rights. We call on you to contribute or loan money to us (which GALA TV will be obliged to pay back within 3 years period), to the following bank accounts:
For transfers in AMD:
“YUNIBANK” CJSC, “Gyumri” Branch,
Account number: 2410 3101 2610 Vahan Khachatryan
For transfers in USD
Intermediary Bank: Deutsche Bank Trust Company Americas, New York
Beneficiary’s bank: UNIBANK, Armenia, SWIFT: UNIJ AM 22
Beneficiary: Khachatryan Vahan Account: 2410 3111 2618
Despite the fact, that this call for assistance was issued starting from March 17, the Headquarters of Freedom of Speech and GALA TV Protection as well as the management of the GALA TV company have already received several hundred phone calls, stating their support for our cause and expressing readiness to assist. Feel free to contact us at: +374 312 31819, +374 312 31889 or call directly the founder of GALA TV Vahan Khachatryan at: + 374 91 43 55 63.

Background: The RA Authorities started a incredible administrative pressures (Via the RA Presidential Office, RA State Security Service: Shirak and Gyumri branches, RA State Tax Service operatives and Gyumri Tax Service, RA National Committee of Television and Radio officials), after the TV company dared to broadcast on October 14, 2007, the 22 minute public speech made by the RA first president L. Ter-Petrossian, after his 10 year-long silence, at Marcotte-Armenia hotel on September 21, 2007.