NA Official And Opposition Delegations In Strasbourg On Occasion Of

NA OFFICIAL AND OPPOSITION DELEGATIONS IN STRASBOURG ON OCCASION OF PACE SESSION

Noyan Tapan
April 14, 2008

YEREVAN, APRIL 14, NOYAN TAPAN. The PACE spring session will be held
on April 14-18 in Strasbourg. The Armenian delegation also takes
part in its proceedings. The report of John Prescott, the head of the
PACE monitoring mission in the February 19 presidential elections in
Armenia, on the elections is on the agenda of the session’s first
day. The issue of including the report on the state of democratic
institutions in Armenia in the agenda as an urgent one is to be also
decided through voting. In case of its adoption the issue will be
discussed on April 17.

According to Radio Liberty, Hovhannes Igitian, a member of the Armenian
National Movement party Board, is also in Strasbourg. According to
him, the main goal of his stay in Strasbourg is to meet with Council
of Europe and PACE officials. "The first goal of our delegation’s stay
here is that there should be no political prisoners in Armenia. Second,
we should bring the freedom of expression and press to the standards,
which are accepted here," H. Igitian said. According to him, during
the meeting with Council of Europe Chairman Terry Davis the latter
said that he will attend to these people’s fate himself. The ANM
Board member also mentioned that is is needless to speak about the
"disgraceful amendments" made to the valid law On Holding Meetings,
Rallies, Processions, and Demonstrations lately, as Armenia has
adopted them "only temporarily, to exclude rallies in Armenia for two
or three months, and it is obvious that they will be liquidated soon
and Armenia will return to the former law."

By the way, the relatives and supporters of arrested oppositionists
held an action of protest on April 14 in front of the Council of
Europe Yerevan Office. As Melisa Brown, the wife of former Foreign
Minister Alexander Arzumanian, who is arrested at present, said to
Radio Liberty, they did not expect any reception from the office
responsibles and they have already sent their letter with thousands
of signatures to Council of Europe demanding releasing the political
prisoners, having an effect upon the RA authorities in the issue of
freedom of expression and rallies.

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