February 19
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YEREVAN. – During the investigation of the criminal case, including during Armenia’s second President Robert Kocharyan’s detention, gross violations were committed against his rights and fundamental freedoms.

Hayk Alumyan, one of Kocharyan’s legal defenders, said about the abovementioned at a press conference on Friday. He noted this while presenting their view on the recently disseminated wiretapped recording of the telephonic conversation between the National Security Service (NSS) director and the Special Investigation Service head.

Alumyan presented their respective statement, according to which the content of this conversation shows that the first instance court judge—who was  considering the matter of remanding Kocharyan in custody—had coordinated his respective future course of action with the NSS director, the latter had given this judge a direct instruction to detain the second President, and the detention is not applied for lawful reasons but to force a person to testify.

As per the statement, an unlawful criminal prosecution is carried out against Robert Kocharyan, and the processes toward his remanding in custody have taken place with violations of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.

Second President of Armenia Robert Kocharyan has been charged within the framework of the criminal case into the tragic events that transpired in capital city Yerevan on March 1 and 2, 2008—and under Article 300.1 Paragraph 1 of the Criminal Code; that is, breaching Armenia’s constitutional order, in conspiracy with others.

On July 27, Kocharyan was remanded in custody for two months by a court decision. But on August 13, the Court of Appeal granted Robert Kocharyan’s legal defenders’ appeal to commute the first-instance court’s decision on remanding their client in custody, and Kocharyan was released from courtroom on the grounds that he has presidential immunity.

On March 1 and 2, 2008, the then authorities used force against the opposition members who were rallying in downtown Yerevan, and against the results of the recent presidential election. Eight demonstrators as well as two servicemen of the internal troops were killed in the clashes. But no one had been brought to account for these deaths, to this day.

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