YPC Weekly Newsletter

2007


EDITORS OF “CHORRORD ISHKHANUTIUN” AND “HAIKAKAN ZHAMANAK” DETAINED DURING THE CRACKDOWN ON THE MARCH

On October 23 at 19.00 at one of the central streets of Yerevan the police
applied force against several dozens of march participants, who disseminated
leaflets and informed with loudspeaker the citizens about the opposition rally,
scheduled for October 26. As YPC was told by the Chief Editor of “Chorrord Ishkhanutiun”
newspaper Shogher Matevosian, who took part in the march, their way was first
blocked by the police, later joined by the “red berets” – the special troops.
The representatives of law enforcement bodies demanded that loudspeaker be not
used and then applied force and tear gas, Shogher Matevosian said. Over a dozen
of march participants were detained and taken to the Police of Center community
of Yerevan, including journalists – Shogher Matevosian herself and the Chief
Editor of “Haikakan Zhamanak” daily Nikol Pashinian. The detained left the police
at about 4.00 in the morning of October 24. All that time representatives of
parties, NGOs, journalists were gathered by the building.

According to Shogher Matevosian, during the crackdown on the march the correspondent
of “Chorrord Ishkhanutiun” Gohar Vezirian was injured and had to seek medical
assistance. The Editor of “Chorrord Ishkhanutiun” noted that currently the condition
of Gohar Vezirian has deteriorated. Violence was exercised against Nikol Pashinian,
too.

According to the press release of the RA Police of October 24, due to public
disorder and resistance (as a result of which “four police officers with corporal
injuries needed medical assistance”) the Investigative Department of the Police
of Center Community of Yerevan instituted criminal proceedings on Articles 258
(“Public disorder”) and 316 (“Violence against power representative”) of the
RA Criminal Code. Some of the detained, including Nikol Pashinian and Shogher
Matevosian, as suspects on the case, were committed to not leaving the places
of permanent residence, the press release of the RA Police stresses. The document,
however, fails to dwell on the march participants injured and the application
of special means.

On the same day, October 23, in Nor Nork community of Yerevan the police detained
four members of the youth wing of the Armenian National Movement, who were also
distributing leaflets, announcing the upcoming rally of October 26. As YPC was
told by the photo correspondent of “Haik” newspaper David Jalalian, having been
informed about it, staff of “Haik” arrived at the police department. According
to Jalalian, when the police noticed he was taking pictures, they prohibited
the shooting “on administrative premises”. The journalist’s camera was taken
away. It was soon returned – with shots deleted.