YPC Weekly Newsletter

2004


CAMPAIGN IN SUPPORT OF “A1+”

On March 19, Fund for Speech Freedom Support announced a campaign on April
2, 2004 in support of “A1+” TV company. On this very day, two years ago “A1+”
was deprived of air as a result of refusal by National Commission on Television
and Radio of broadcast license. Since then, the TV company unsuccessfully participated
in seven more license competitions conducted by National Commission and still
more unsuccessfully challenged the decisions of this regulating body in the
courts.

In the course of these two years, numerous international organizations, journalistic
community of the country repeatedly addressed the Armenian authorities with
a claim not to politicize “A1+” issue and to give the society an opportunity
to hear an alternative viewpoint. The recent example of this was the Final Statement
and Recommendations adopted at the Sixth Session of EU-Armenia Parliamentary
Cooperation Committee, held on March 15-16 in Yerevan. Among the Recommendations,
adopted unanimously and pursuant to Article 89 of the Partnership and Cooperation
Agreement, Parliamentary Cooperation Committee “draws attention to the vital
role played by a free press in ensuring the development of democracy in Armenia
and stresses in particular the importance of pluralism in the electronic media”.

The initiative group on the support of “A1+” TV company calls on everyone who
values freedom of expression to participate on April 2 in the procession and
rally thus supporting the following claims to the Armenian authorities: to conduct
a competition for vacant frequencies and to involve representatives of public
organizations in the process of rating assessments of the bidders’ competition
packages.

The procession will start at 14.00 from “A1+” TV building (15, Grigor Lusavorich
St., Yerevan) and will end in a rally (at 15.00) at Yerevan Freedom Square.