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The Armenian authorities have turned detention into a punitive mechanism against the opposition. This is what secretary of the “Armenia” parliamentary faction of the National Assembly of Armenia Artsvik Minasyan said during today’s parliamentary discussion on the report on the activities of the Central Electoral Commission.

According to him, the authorities were detaining village heads and mayors just because they had provided assistance to needy citizens before the elections which was eventually interpreted as an attempt of corruption.

“At the same time, the regional governors appointed by the authorities were doing the same thing, but nobody thought about accusing them of anything. Besides this, law-enforcement authorities didn’t reprimand the actions of deputies and ministers of the ruling party, the campaign visit of Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan to Syunik Province for which the government used resources, as well as several actions of ministers and parliamentarians. Our two deputies — Mkhitar Zakaryan and Armen Charchyan — are under arrest, and none of the deputies representing the incumbent authorities doesn’t even want to submit an inquiry to specify the health condition of Charchyan which has sharply deteriorated,” the opposition MP stressed, adding that none of the government officials having potentially committed violations has been punished.

“Moreover, in many cases, opposition figures are detained, but it’s not clear whether the detention is truly proportionate to the alleged violations or whether they are the authorities’ repressive methods,” Minasyan said.

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