BODYGUARDS IN SHADOW
Story from Lragir.am News:
Published: 15:40:27 – 16/11/2011
A very interesting draft law on bodyguards has been presented to the
parliament. The authors of the draft suggest limiting the number of
bodyguards to three and the escort to one car.
It seems to be a very important initiative because the bodyguards of
the so-called oligarchs have become something like the second Police
or National Security Service for the society and sometimes they are
even more brutal and violent and with more authority and impunity
than the Police and the NSS.
For example, the opposition has issued a lot of statements and
published a lot of materials that bodyguards of notorious oligarchs
have had a considerable contribution to the events on March 1, 2008
which resulted in the death of 10 people and many injured people.
By the way, the list of those oligarchs who “provided” their bodyguards
to perform that task has been published. Only Gagik Tsarukyan denied
participation of his bodyguard in those events.
Serzh Sargsyan once dwelt on bodyguards during the event dedicated to
the 20th anniversary of the Republican Party in late 2010. He stated
that he does not understand why people keep such long escorts and so
many bodyguards. After this statement, the oligarchs cut the number
of cars and bodyguards up to 1 but not always. Moreover, the Police
seemed to control to prevent long escorts.
Now, all this is fitted into a draft law. This is a step forward
because it would be strange to have the head of state give out oral
instructions to the Police to count the bodyguards of oligarchs.
But the general situation remains absurd, whether it is an oral
instruction or a law. After all, one of the most “inventive” oligarchs
of Armenia responded several months ago to a question on bodyguards
saying that those are his “office employees”. This inventive man is
Apparently, the number of “office employees” also needs to be regulated
by the law. After this, Samvel Alexanyan or another creative oligarch
would say those are not “office employees” but “their car maintenance
It makes no difference whether the number of bodyguards is three or
thirteen. An army could accompany the oligarchs: it is their business,
the consequence of their system of values or a matter of fear.
The task of the state, before limiting the number of bodyguards,
is to limit arbitrariness and impunity of bodyguards. Oligarchs and
their bodyguards need legal rather than numeral limitations to make
them equal before the law with ordinary citizens.
This is an issue to be resolved, otherwise nothing is changed. This
issue does not need a new law but the application of the existing laws.
The economic shadow needs numeric reductions. Meanwhile, this step
will not cast light on what the bodyguards have but will push them
into the shade.