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December 13
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Sevak Hakobyan, the editor of Yerevan.today online media, has given a press conference today. During the press conference he has presented information on the searches in the office of the media which took place a day before. Explaining the situation he said that he sees a definite pressure on freedom of speech, since those media outlets which oppose the main course set by the Prime Minister are somehow attacked nowadays.

“Even though the majority of online media outlets published the leaked conversation nearly simultaneously, only some of them were attacked by fakes. Besides, our website was under DDOS attack a week prior to the events”,- he claimed.

Answering a question of a journalist he told that the artificial division of “whites” and “blacks”, or “revolutionary” and “anti-revolutionary” observed nowadays, is another evidence of pressure.

“There are privileged media outlets: thus, nobody started investigation when the NSS officer provided and “Armenian Times” daily (is owned by Nikol Pashinyan, he and his wife were editors-in-chief) published infamous photo of Manvel Grigoryan in his ward. However, only 2 media outlets were mentioned as the “criminals” to disseminate the leaked conversation in the official statements”,- he noted. He told that his personal computer and some hard drives were taken. During the whole process of searches which lasted more than 6 hours, they were not able to operate, since the network computer was not on for some while. Hakobyan also expressed his concerns that the computer which was confiscated, may be returned with added files, software and hardware in a way, so they will not be able to work properly and according to journalism ethics in terms of uncovering the sources of information.

Answering another question Hakobyan explained that the organization is not linked to Robert Kocharyan. “We were periodically “tied” to various political parties or individuals, but this has nothing to do with the reality. May be you can write an official letter and we can provide all the information”,- he said.

Concluding the press conference the editor expressed his worries that the Prime Minister’s official announcement that the leakage is done by the internal forces, is directly indicating pressure on the investigation. This is why law enforcement bodies do look for the responsible inside the country, in his opinion.

“I just hope, that they will have the courage to confess that nothing was found”,- he finished.

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