On February 21, 2017, HCA Vanadzor held a discussion on ‘Situation of Human Rights Violations in Police-Citizen Relations in 2016’.
Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly Vanadzor Office
In 2013-2016, HCA Vanadzor submitted 40 crime reports within the citizen-police relations and not a single case of bringing a police officer to criminal responsibility was recorded.
At this stage, the criminal prosecution against Vartan Oskanian’s son is motivated by Oskanian’s political activities; information on potential initiation of criminal proceedings against Seyran Ohanyan may be also viewed in a similar context. This observation was made by human rights activist Artur Sakunts in his interview to Lragir.am .
Considering the importance of the work that the OSCE Office in Yerevan does, we want to emphasize that its closure will hinder the process of building democratic institutions in the country. The Office is much needed in Armenia.
Repressions by Russian authorities against journalists in Crimea require a strong and clear reaction by the international community
The Russian government is preparing a new act of political reprisal against critics of its actions on the Crimean peninsula, annexed by Russia in 2014 in direct contradiction to international law.
On February 12, 2017, the ‘Independent Observer’ Public Alliance with 15 observers monitored the elections of the Council of Elders in Semyonovka village of Gegharkunik marz (region) during which the voter registration electronic technical devices were tested. The observers of the ‘Independent Observer’ Public Alliance and representatives of the partner mass media stayed at the polling station for the period of 10:30 am-13:30 pm and witnessed various tests of applying the voter registration electronic devices.
Глава Ванадзорского офиса Хельсинкской гражданской ассамблеи, правозащитник Артур Сакунц также согласен, что Белоруссия выдала человека, который явно подвергается именно политическому преследованию, и, кроме того, тем самым подвергла его угрозе пыток.
By his letter dated February 6, 2016, the CoE Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland reacted to Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly-Vanadzor’s Report on the draft Law on the Republic of Armenia Human Rights Defender submitted to the Secretary General back on December 8, 2016.
On February 1, the NKR Defense Ministry made a statement that the “invalid” notes in the military IDs of the servicemen who took part in the 4-day April war “are conditioned by the negligent omissions by relevant officer of the military unit in question.”
HCA Vanadzor has analyzed 66 recommendations issued by the Venice Commission and OSCE/ODIHR in the Preliminary Opinion. According to this analysis 29 recommendations were implemented in the Final text of the Code, 24 recommendations were not implemented and 13 recommendations were implemented partly.
On October 2, 2016, there were local elections held in 377 communities. The New Electoral Code adopted by the RA National Assembly in May 25, 2016, stipulated a system for forming the local government in the cities of Vanadzor and Gyumri. According to the new system, residents of Vanadzor and Gyumri would directly vote only for a proportional city council, which in its turn would vote in a mayor. Each party/party alliance list would be led by their proposed candidate for the city head.