YPC Weekly Newsletter

2002


THE EXTRAORDINARY SESSION OF THE RA NA ON THE INTRODUCTION OF AMENDMENTS TO THE BROADCAST LAW DID NOT TAKE PLACE

Summoned on April 16, the extraordinary session of the National Assembly of Armenia on the introduction of amendments to the RA Law “On Television and Radio” did not take place due to the lack of house. The amendments were supposed to legally stipulate a right for a broadcaster, who lost the license and challenged the decision in court, to be entitled to go on air until the court makes a decision. Had this amendment been passed, “A1+” would have been able to resume broadcasting.

As it has been reported, the proposal to summon an extraordinary session was made by the Chairman of the Standing Committee on Science, Education, Culture and Youth Issues Shavarsh Kocharian, deputies Hrant Khachatrian and Haik Babukhanian on April 3, yet the members of the Parliament did not have time to discuss the suggestion (see YPC Weekly Newsletter, March 30 – April 5, 2002).

At the meeting of the opposition parties to protect “A1+” on April 12 Shavarsh Kocharian called on people to come on Monday, April 15, to the building of the Parliament and thus express their support to the initiative of the deputies to summon the extraordinary session. As it appeared, it is the deputies that should have been called – to the session room.

On April 18, during the traditional Thursday briefing of the Parliament factions and groups, the member of “Right and Unity” faction Aghasi Arshakian announced that in the situation when “A1+” TV company presenting alternative opinions is deprived of its air, the meaning of the briefings is lost – because media voluntarily decide which part of the briefing must be covered, thus distorting the content of what has been said. It follows from the words of Aghasi Arshakian that until the air of “A1+” is restored, his faction will not participate in briefings.