Police prevent opposition attempt to stage protest action

Armenian Police prevented the attempt of a group of 20-30 young opposition supporters to hold a protest-action in front of Armenia’s Central Electoral Commission (CEC) “to mark one year of the elections faked on February 19, 2008.” today. At 14:30 about 30 young oppositionists came up to CEC building, bearing posters and three-colored flags and chanting, “Serzhik, go away!” The demonstrators had hardly moved for 10 meters when the representatives of law enforcement bodies rushed…

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RFE/RL: Belgian Goes on Hunger Strike in Armenian Capital

Hunger strikes have become a fact of life as of late – nobody seems to pay any attention to them any more. People go in an out of hunger-strikes every day. However, this one story carried by RFE/RL is certainly one of special interest – a 51-year-old citizen of Belgium, Luc Vandevale, who is married to an Armenian and is based in Armenia – working in the construction industry, has gone on an open-ended hunger…

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Armenian news headlines during the week

The big news at the start of the week was ex-president Robert Kocharyan’s interview given to Mediamax News Agency in response to ex-president Levon Ter-Petrossian’s speech on May 1st. Quite expectedly, Kocharyan talked complete crap, noting, that as he is not Armenia’s President anymore, he will be more unrestrained in his speech – not that he was ever restrained or anything. Basically, while the great, educated egotist Ter-Petrossian was analyzing the situation in Armenia in…

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Amid widespread public scepticism government undertakes some positive steps

Public attitude remained generally skeptical towards the efforts of President Sargsyan and PM Sargsyan to restore public trust by undertaking some positive steps over the past couple of weeks. One of the first such steps was the dismissal of Armen Avetisyan, the chairman of the the Armenian Customs Service (ACS) for the last 8 years and the followed by a meeting of President Serzh Sargsyan with the ACS officials. On this highly publicized event President…

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Women demand fair trial

About 150 women had gathered in front of the general prosecutor’s office to demand fair trial and freedom for political prisoners. They also conveyed a letter to the prosecutor’s office. “Today, we have not come here to celebrate our feast but we have come here to demand freedom for our husbands and men. Since they are in prisons, we cannot celebrate it,” says Heghine Harutyunyan, a participant of the action. That was included in the…

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OSCE, Council of Europe: amendments to Armenia's assembly law raise serious concerns

STRASBOURG/WARSAW, 02.04.2008 – In a joint legal opinion, the Council of Europe’s Venice Commission and the OSCE’s Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) concluded that recent amendments to Armenia’s assembly law raise serious concerns. The amendments to the Law of the Republic of Armenia on Conducting Meetings, Assemblies, Rallies and Demonstrations, passed on 17 March 2008, were reviewed by the ODIHR’s Expert Panel on Freedom of Assembly and the Venice Commission following a…

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Aghvan Hovsepyan gives details of March 1 deaths

E-channel reports some details of the meeting of Peter Semnebi, the special representative of the European Union in South Caucasus with RA General prosecutor Aghvan Hovsepyan, who has told during the conversation that “8 people have died as a result of the disorders, 1 of them – a policeman – from an explosion of a grenade; 3 have died as a result of the special means applied (according to the initial conclusion of the experts);…

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Silent protest action in Yerevan

An action of tribute to the victims of March 1, as well as protest against the clashes of March 1 and the following arrests that took place during the state of emergency was staged in Yerevan yesterday. E-channel reports, that the police had announced about the illegal nature of the protest. At the beginning of the action, at 17:00, a few thousands of protest action participants had gathered at the Northern Avenue. At 17:10, people…

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Bryza and RA MFA exchange contradicting statements on March 1 violence in Armenia

Having returned to U.S. afte a visit to Armenia, U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Matthew Bryza, has sharply condemned a government crackdown on protests following last month’s presidential election. “The violence really was deplorable,” Bryza said Monday.”It seems clear that the reaction by the government was harsh and brutal.” Tigran Balayan, Head of the RA MFA Press Division, has said, in response to a question by ‘Mediamax’ News Agency: We’re astonished that even after…

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Official Report by Republic of Armenia Ombudsman (Human Rights Defender)

The human being, his/her dignity and the fundamental human rights and freedoms are an ultimate value. The state shall ensure the protection of fundamental human and civil rights in conformity with the principles and norms of the international law. The state shall be limited by fundamental human and civil rights as a directly applicable right. Constitution of the RA (Article 3) 1. Even from the pre-electoral campaign period, the public activities of different political bodies resulted…

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