The Announcement by a Number of Armenian Organization on the Continuous Persecution against Andreas Ghukasyan

March 10 of 2018

The civil society organizations express their strong concern and resentment on the fact of continuous political persecution against Andreas Ghukasyan, member of “New Armenia” Opposition Movement.

The local and international organizations have repeatedly raised and recorded, that the authorities “are punishing” Andreas Ghukasyan for his political views. However, those assessments are continiously being neglected not only by Armenian authorities, but also by the international organizations cooperating with Armenian authorities.

Andreas Ghukasyan among 8 other persons, was accused of organizing, as well as participating in mass disorder held on July 29 of 2016. But, currently only Andreas Ghukasyan is being subjected to criminal persecution on the grouds of the above mentioned accusation and detention as a preventive measure has not been changed applied towards him, regardless the numerous interventions and he continues to be under detention.

During the examination of the complaint to change the detention as a preventive measure submitted by Andreas Ghukasyan’s advocate, in the court the judge addressed a question whether Andreas Ghukasyan will continue his opposition activity if released. After getting the positive response of Andreas Ghukasyan, the court made a decision not to change the detention as a preventive measure applied towards him, keeping him in detention.

On February 23 of 2017, the European Court of Human Rights registered the complaint-application filed by Andreas Ghukasyan.

The violation issue of Article 18 of the Convention was raised for the first time in the complaint-application against Republic of Armenia. The mentioned article aims at prohibiting the abuse of state authorities towards political opponents and the European Court comments the latter as a means for any “hidden intentions” of state bodies.

The European Court of Human Rights gave a priority to the examination of Andreas Ghukasyan’s complaint-application (Rules of the European Court of Human Rights, Rule 41), which means that the Courts should address questions to the RA Government on the violations within short deadlines. Nevertheless, after more than 12 months, the RA Government has not received any questions by the Court. This circumstance creates additional concerns, that postponing the questioning procedure to the RA Government can be conditioned by the influence of the Armenian advocates working in the European Court of Human Rights.

In this regard, we demand

The RA authorities

  • to immediately stop the political persecution against Andreas Ghukasyan and release him.

The European Union and other international organizations working with the Republic of Armenia

  • Make the demand to stop political persecutions and especially the one against Andreas Ghukasyan one of their main preconditions for the development of their relations with the Republic of Armenia.

European Court of Human Rights

  • Demonstrate consistency and responsibility towards the examination of the cases having political implication, moreover, when a priority order for their examination has been established.
  1. Journalist’s “Asparez”Club
  2. “Cooperation for Democracy Center” NGO
  3. “Jurnalists for Human Rights” NGO
  4. Yerevan Press Club
  5. “Foundation against the Violation of Law” NGO
  6. “Helsinki Association of Armenian” NGO
  7. “Union of informed citizens” NGO
  8. “Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly Vanadzor-office” NGO
  9. “Peace Dialogue” NGO
  10. “SOSE” NGO
  11. “Women’s Support Center” NGO
  12. “Protection of Rights without Borders” NGO
  13. “Armenian Helsinki Committee” NGO
  14. “Women’s Resource Center” NGO
  15. “Public Information and Need of Knowledge”
  16. “New Generation” Humanitarian NGO
  17. “Spitak Helsinki Group” NGO
  18. “Transparency International Anti-Corruption Centre” NGO
  19. “Khoran Ard” Intellectual Center NGO
  20. “My Defender” NGO
  21. “Shogher Union” NGO
  22. Open Society Foundations-Armenia
  23. “Armavir Development Centre” NGO
  24. The Caucasus Research Resource Centers
  25. “Media Initiatives Center” NGO
  26. “Consumers’ Consulting Center” NGO
  27. “Khazer” ecological and cultural NGO
  28. “Free Citizen” NGO
  29. Colorful House Social-Cultural and Human Rights Defender” NGO