After a long delay, the Penitentiary Medicine Center finally responded to lifer Aram Arakelyan. The interdepartmental medical commission recognized his illness – ischemic stroke of the brain – as compatible with detention. “According to the conclusion drawn up, the diagnosis of Aram Arakelyan, who was sentenced to life imprisonment, does not correspond to the list of diseases preventing the serving of punishment defined by the RA Government Decision No. 825-N of 05/26/2006,” – said in the letter signed by the director of the Center Kamo Manukyan.

To remind, Aram Arakelyan, who spent more than 30 years in the detention center, is in an extremely serious condition. He faints frequently, is weak, needs regular drip treatments, sharp pressure fluctuations. His mother, Roza Arakelyan, claims that her son is helpless and waits for hours for medical assistance, which either does not happen or is provided late.

The Penitentiary Medicine Center denies this information, claiming that Arakelyan is receiving the necessary medical care.

Aram Arakelyan, sentenced to life, suffered a stroke at the end of February, then underwent brain surgery. Part of his face is frozen.

The list of diseases incompatible with detention approved by the government includes coronary heart disease. It is considered a serious disease that hinders serving the sentence. However, after a long delay, Aram Arakelyan’s application to be released from the punishment on the basis of suffering from an illness incompatible with detention was rejected.

His lawyer, Robert Revazyan, told that he is not aware of the documents on the basis of which the commission came to the conclusion, what actions were taken.

“We applied to them to make us a participant, they say that there is no such order. But there is Article 50 of the Constitution, which says that everyone has the right to access all documents concerning him, except for secrets protected by law, and that state and local self-government bodies and officials are obliged to listen to him before adopting an individual act that interferes with his life. In general, additional research is prescribed for Aram Arakelyan. The process did not complete. His condition continues to deteriorate chronically. It’s not like he was operated on once, received treatment and that’s it. A decision was made without conducting that final, complete research,” says the lawyer. All this, according to him, calls into question the objectivity of the conclusion of the interdepartmental commission.

To the question whether it is possible that the diagnosis of Aram Arakelyan’s disease, ischemic heart disease, simply does not correspond to the list of diseases issued by the government’s decision, he answered:

“Medical terminology is diverse, the same disease can be indicated by several terminology. The list defined by the government’s decision is merely an indicative list, not exhaustive. It is for guidance, it defines a group of diseases, which may not coincide with the exact name, but are equivalent to the diagnosis of the convict. At first glance, it may seem that they are different, but in fact it is the same disease. If we receive the final documents, it will be clear what happened,” says Robert Revazyan. He plans to appeal the commission’s decision.

Syuzan Simonyan


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