YPC Weekly Newsletter



On February 3 “Hetq”, the publication of “Investigative Journalists” NGO, addressed to the RA General Prosecutor Aghvan Hovsepian with a communication on a crime (the same message was stored on “Hetq” website).

The reason for the address became the incident of February 2 between Grisha Balasanian, correspondent of “Hetq”, and Ruben Hayrapetian, RA National Assembly MP, Chairman of the Football Federation of Armenia. Grisha Balasanian had called Ruben Hayrapetian on his mobile phone and asked him to answer to some questions. In his reply Ruben Hayrapetian called him “ignoramus”, telling to refer to the press-service of the Federation. Nevertheless, “Hetq” correspondent did not inquire about information on football, but the case versus “Haykakan Zhamanak”, where Ruben Hayrapetian was one of the plaintiffs (see above). Thus, the journalist made a second call. Ruben Hayrapetian asked whether the journalist has a recorder on. Getting an affirmative reply, the MP started to swear at Grisha Balasanian. This conduct was assessed by “Hetq” as impeding the legitimate professional activities of the journalist.

The record of the telephone communications between Grisha Balasanian and Ruben Hayrapetian was enclosed to the address to the Procuracy.

The piece, “MP Swore at the Journalist”, published in “Azg” daily on February 3, 2011, deals with the incident of “Hetq” correspondent and notes that it is not the first case when Ruben Hayrapetian demonstrates rude manners: he is known for his disrespectful attitude not only towards journalists but also towards his subordinates; sometimes he even slaps them. Reminding about the case with the former Yerevan Mayor Gagik Beglarian, dismissed of his office for assaulting the representative of the RA President’s Office, “Azg” presumed that if tomorrow Ruben Hayrapetian calls “ignoramus” and swears at the representative of the President’s Office, “the tide will naturally turn”. “The authorities will declare that all are equal before the law and will punish the MP. However, unless it comes to the presidential attendants, for the strong, the weak are always guilty,” concludes “Azg”.

On February 4 “Hetq” informed on its site that it had sent a letter and the telephone communications record to Serzh Sargsian, RA President and Chairman of Republican Party of Armenia. As Ruben Hayrapetian is a member of the Republican Party Council, “Hetq” solicited the President of Armenia to consider the MP’s conduct at the session of the Council and “to take necessary measures, for Ruben Hayrapetian does not feel unpunished”.