The examination of human rights violation and pressure cases recorded between January-July 2017 give sufficient grounds to conclude that the conditions for human rights defenders and their activities are in adequate for a full-fledged protection of the rights and interests of citizens and social groups in Armenia.
Among primary negative factors are the institutional obstacles posed by the state structure to defenders of human rights and public interests, rights advocates, environmentalists and lawyers, inequalities faced by them and hindrances created by business structures. Rights and public interests activists have obviously faced not only Armenia’s faulty judicial system but also the obstructions created by a number of actors and institutions including state administration structures (even Yerevan City Hall among them), governmentbacked institutions, the conservative dominant culture encouraged by the state, as well as anti-rights activists and NGOs with business and partisan orientations proliferating in the recent years.
Publicly visible HRDs (in particular defenders of women’s and LGBT+ rights) typically become targets of moral reprimand, hatred and hostility. Such targeted campaigns are orchestrated and guided by the patronizing state authority agencies. As a result, Armenia has in the recent years seen the proliferation of public organizations tied to certain party and state figures and covertly subserving Armenia’s Eurasian succession politics as well as big businesses. Not only do these groups disseminate reproach, defamation, hate speech and threats towards rights advocates but also forward the interests of those political orientations at the expense of the protection of Armenian citizens’ interests and rights.