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Discrimination in Armenia is Encouraged on a State Level: Statement

Discrimination and hate speech, continuous physical and psychological pressure on individuals, as well as inappropriate remarks by the judicial system in Armenia are impermissible, said a joint statement signed by 30 organizations.

The statement’s authors express their concern about Yerevan Kentron and Nork-Marash District General Court Judge Ruben Nersisyan’s recent verdict,  which refused the 16 plaintiffs demand to hold the Iravunk Media company and Iravunk paper’s editor-in-chief Hovhannes Galajyan accountable for damaging the plaintiffs’ honor and dignity.    

“With this decision the court endangers the citizens՛ security, immunity, and right to be free from discrimination, and it benefits future dangerous manifestations of discrimination,” noted the statement.

The statement presents the conviction that such attitudes toward citizens, sponsored on a state level, create an environment of impunity and fertile soil for stronger manifestations of hate crimes in the future.

“In particular, the Republican Party of Armenia faction MP Hayk Babukhanyan, the editorial board founding-president of Iravunk Media company who publicly supports the legitimacy discriminatory statements. While Hayk Babukhanyan received the state’s most prestigious medal, the ceremony lit a green light to the distribution of society’s segregatory and polarizing viewpoints,” noted the NGO representatives.

The statement’s authors are demanding the RA authorities to:

  • to condemn discrimination and hate encouraging calls by senior officials and other individuals through mass media and other outlets,
  • to safeguard an independent, comprehensive, and objective examination of court cases based on hate,
  • to safeguard the present case’s targeted sixteen plaintiffs' security and immunity, the right to be free from discrimination and violence.