“This is torture”: Defenders of Mher Yeghiazaryan, who died in penitentiary as a result of a 44-day hunger strike, will apply to the European Court

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“The accused of embezzlement of millions of dollars are being charged today, but they are free, and Mher Eghazaryan, who has been on hunger strike for 44 days, is charged only for 9 million drams of fraud, but he was not released from custody even for 5 million drams ailout sum bproposed by him,” Hayk Armenakyan, the lawyer of Mher Yeghiazaryan, who died in the penitentiary, said to Forrights.am.

It should be noted that today, on January 26, at about 06.35 am, the Vice-President of the political party “Armenian Eagles: United Armenia”, the 50-years-old Mher Yeghiazaryan, who was responsible for the HayNews website, who detained in “Nubarashen” penitentiary of the RA Ministry of Justice, was declared dead by the ambulance doctor called for helping the detainee whose health condition had sharply deteriorated.

The Yerevan City Court of General Jurisdiction, presided by Judge Armen Bektashyan, refused his advocates’ request to bail out him.

“This is torture. The Judicial and Preliminary Investigation Body was obliged to take into account a person’s health condition,” said the lawyer. “Additionally, the allegation against him did not imply public danger; in other cases people charged with frauds of 50 times bigger sums of money were bailed out.

The 50-years-old Mher Yeghazaryan was a father of two sons, both of whom are lawyers. While in prison, he did not have the opportunity to see his family until the end of his life. Visits were banned for the person on a hunger strike for 44 days.

“He was absolutely isolated during his hunger strike. Doctors, Human rights activists visited the penitentiary, but he did not stop the hunger strike. The ambulance had been called, which took him to a hospital. The hospital found no problems in the person’s health after 35-day-long hunger strike. These are questions the answers to which I do not have today,” said the lawyer.

Four lawyers are involved in this case. Hayk Armenakyan said that they still have to understand their future tactics, but they will definitely apply to the European Court. “If the court refuses to bail out in this case, for which cases does the institute of bail-out exist?”, asks the lawyer.

According to the allegation, Mher Yeghiazaryan, with the aim of fraudulent possession of another’s property, in the period of February 2014 to October 2018, individually or through mediators, abusing the trust of a number of RA citizens, including some servicemen, has demanded, received and fraudulently seized without any action from 180,000 to 4 million 775 thousand Armenian drams, equivalent to $10,000, under the pretense of service or job placement, promotions or solving other types of issues, and bribery.

A criminal case was initiated by the Investigative Department of the National Security Service of the Republic of Armenia according to Article 178, Paragraph 1 (3) and Article 34-312, Paragraph 3 (1) of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Armenia.

According to human rights activist Artur Sakunts, the penitentiary is responsible for the incident.” According to the preliminary data, it is clear that the PI’s medical service did not properly follow the detainee’s health condition and did not take any measures to save his life,” said the human rights activist in his conversation with us.

According to Sakunts, the medical service of the penitentiary should have constantly followed and alerted about the health condition of the detainee who has been on hunger strike for so long, inform what possible consequences might be, and what was his health condition.

It should be noted that the investigative committee has initiated investigation to find out the circumstances of Mher Yeghiazaryan’s death and those responsible for it.

Marine Kharatyan

ԹՈՂՆԵԼ ՊԱՏԱՍԽԱՆ

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