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Hunger-Striking Yerevan Prisoner Suffers Sharp Health Deterioration

Arkadi Papyan, a 43-year-old inmate of the Nubarashen prison in Yerevan, suffered serious health deterioration on Sunday and had to be transferred to a civilian hospital, his lawyer Amram Makinyan informed Epress.am today. Papyan, who has been on a hunger strike for 39 days, was taken back to the prison after receiving an IV treatment, the lawyer added.

Papyan has been serving a nine-year prison sentence for murder and was recently charged with bribing Armavir prison chief Gevorg Mkrtchyan in order to receive special privileges in jail. The case is currently pending in court; in the meantime, Papyan has been sent to continue serving his sentence in Nubarashen.

The prisoner went on a hunger strike over a month ago to protest against the actions of the body conducting the proceedings and the prosecutor responsible for overseeing the preliminary investigation process. Papyan insists that the newly-filed criminal charge is not supported by any substantial evidence.

“My client has his own version of why he’d be persecuted in this way; he has, however, decided not to talk about it just yet. I can nonetheless say Papyan is convinced this charge was ordered by certain people,” the lawyer told us.