Pashinian’s Inconvenient Jail Term Case and The Call: “Free Nikol!”

As expected, Court of General Jurisdiction rejected on Friday opposition leader Nikol Pashinian‘s appeal to modify his jail term in a way as to let him out of prison before the February 2013 Presidential elections in Armenia.

Pashinian, 35, shouldn’t be in jail in the first place. The charismatic oppositionist, editor of “Haykakan Zhamanak” daily, was the front-runner and young, inspiring leader, who teamed up with Armenia’s First President Levon Ter-Petrossian and engineered a miracle during the 2008 Presidential race. He rose the opposition (including Ter-Petrossian), rallied tens and hundreds of thousands of supporters and ruined plans for former President Robert Kocharian to easily transfer power to current President Serzh Sargsian. Instead, Sargsian gained his presidency in elections which were described as ‘flawed’ by international observers and ‘illegitimate’ by the opposition. Opposition protests followed, which concluded in March 1-2 violence in Yerevan.

On January 19 a Yerevan court of the first instance found Pashinian guilty of stirring up the “mass disturbances” that left ten people dead and more than 200 others injured. The verdict was upheld in the Court of Appeals, which, however, ruled that the prominent opposition leader will serve only about half of the controversial sentence in accordance with a general amnesty declared by the Armenian authorities last June.

The verdict was clearly politically motivated, the trial was sheer mockery and everybody understood – it’s the authorities trying to punish the rebel-editor.

The amnesty and the splitting of the jail term would have seemed like a positive gesture, however, the re-counting of the split-term was done in a way to make sure, that Pashinian won’t be there to rally opposition ahead of next Presidential race, where Serzh Sargsian seeks reelection. The math behind this is simply ridiculous, but nothing more should have been expected of these authorities. It is a survival issue for them, so Friday’s court ruling was no surprise.

“Clearly, Serzh Sarkisian and his regime are doing and will do everything to make sure that I get out of jail as late as possible,” Pashinian said after the verdict.

The question now is – can the opposition and the independent, free-thinking people in Armenia team up to fight for the release of the jailed editor, who keeps bashing authorities in his writings from prison? Maybe. I have started seeing the first signs of this, as the editors of about a dozen Armenian newspapers and online news agencies demanded on Thursday Pashinian’s release.

My blog is not really a media outlet, and I’m not exactly it’s editor, but from today, I’ll be proud to join those demanding his release BEFORE the next presidential elections and will be posting a banner linking to his blog with the call: “Free Nikol!”


3 thoughts on “Pashinian’s Inconvenient Jail Term Case and The Call: “Free Nikol!”

  1. ruined transfer of power plans? how did he accomplish this?
    rk’s transfer of power to ss went according to plan and was successful. its buisness as usual for them. so again, how did Pashinyan ruin anything?
    NP is just another pawn in the many of propagandic political arena of Armenia. he is paid to do what he is paid to do, he is given wealth & power to be by his masters (LTP) side, he does exactly what he is ordered to do, he is being the good little slave that he is to LTP and rest of the cronies

    jail?? what jail? lmfaoooo ara he is not in jail
    its funny how all of you believe this political theatrics that they put on display for all of you to eat up….Cops: “nikol jan, we will put handcuffs on you and walk you in front of cameras to make it look like you are our political prisoner, just smile and pretend to be prisoner”….NP: “ara ok, just make sure the cuffs are not so tight on my wrists ha”
    tell me why no one ever discusses about why LTP is not in jail? he is the leader of the “supposed” opposition. why is it NP is “supposedly” in jail and not LTP?? you think that if you want to eliminate your opposition, you would go after the entire leaership and not only 1 or 2 medium-t0-low level pawns
    one thing I agree…the math behind ALL of this is simply ridiculous and does not add up. this is the same scenario as usa vs. bin laden. they pretend to go after him, but really do nothing to catch him all so that they can keep the “fear” alive that he is out there and a threat to usa. LTP is bin laden of Hayastan and NP is his zarkawi. just as bin laden fed zarkawi to the american dogs, LTP fed Pashinyan to rk-ss regime. if LTP is such the genuine threat to rk-ss, then they would’ve wacked him 2 years ago during March 1-2. just as they murdered Monte in 93 & Vazgo-Karen in 99. so, you can all pretend to believe all this lies & deception tactics on their part, you are the audience and they are the ‘superstar’ actors and this is all one big theater stage. in fact, you all PAY to see them perform. you give them money and refer to it as “campaign donations”, when really its a ticket you buying to the “political” show. there are seats, popcorn, drinks and everything for your entertaining convenience


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