The lawyers for 14 members of the Sasna Tsrer armed group today went to the hearing at the Avan and Nor-Nork district court wearing t-shirts that read “Stop violating our rights!”, “Freedom to Artush Gabrielyan!”. The lawyers, however, did not remain in the courtroom for long as the hearing had been postponed by a week. Presiding judge Artush Gabrielyan did not show up at all.
Speaking to reporters, lawyer Inessa Petrosyan suggested that Gabrielyan had perhaps already been made aware of their plan, and therefore decided not to come.
According to her colleague Yervand Varosyan, the aim of the demonstration was to make the lawyers’ current situation comprehensible for competent authorities. “After all, they must understand that the way they have been treating us lately is illegal,” the lawyer said. Recall, before every court hearing, the lawyers for Sasna Tsrer members are being searched by bailiffs, which, according to the lawyers, they have no right to do.
Why “Freedom to Artush Gabrielyan?” The judge, Inessa Petrosyan is convinced, “has become a hostage of this criminal case.”
“He, too, must be freed. As a presiding judge, he has failed to perform his duties properly. The past months have shown that he is not capable of handling this case,” Petrosyan said.
Lawyer Ara Zakaryan, in turn, told reporters that his colleagues and he would continue coming to the courtroom in these t-shirt until they are provided with proper working conditions: “We are faced with challenges both in courts and prisons. We are not even allowed to bring our laptops with us.”