Today at the Media Center discussion Vardan Harutyunyan, head of the Rights and Freedom Center, described the accident as outrageous but it has recently become common to see violence and assault against young people, political opposition and public figures who act against the authorities.
“In this particular case law enforcement representatives, special troops had everything organized beforehand, there were armed people. The statement issued by the Police of Nagorno Karabakh displays they have assumed the whole responsibility. They acted rather as gangsters than law enforcement agency representatives,” said Harutyunyan.
Earlier on January 31, police and men in plain clothes blocked and assaulted cars traveling from Armenia to Artsakh on the Goris-Stepanakert highway near Berdzor, preventing them from crossing into Artsakh. Around 20 members of the 100th Anniversary without the Regime Movement suffered injuries while 15 cars and 3 cameras were broken.
Gevorg Safaryan, member of the Founding Parliament- who took part in the car rally and became an eye witness of the violence act – believes the accident was aimed at building barriers between societies of Armenia and Nagorno Karabakh.
“When they prohibit Zhirayr Sefilyan, one of the prominent commanders of the Artsakh independence war, to cross into Artsakh, it means we are losing it. It was well-planned by the regime to have people assaulted and cars broken, and I would be naïve if I hoped certain people would be punished,” said Safaryan.
Criminal prosecution should be held in Armenia, Artak Kirakosyan, Head of the Council of the Civil Society Institute, said, since citizens of the Republic of Armenia suffered those violence acts.
“Nagorno Karabakh should hold a joint investigation with the Armenian authorities. We condemn absolutely unacceptable actions of law enforcement agencies,” stated Kirakosyan.
The society in Artsakh is drastically different from the one in Armenia, Kirakosyan believes. “The society in Artsakh lives with another logic and world perception and in this respect there is actually a barrier,” he said.
The speaker noted a car rally with senseless, clumsy and even weird slogans mentioning April 24 is perceived as something outrageous and dramatic in Artsakh, unlike Aremnia. Safaryan disagreed noting that the society in Artsakh was disinformed.
“The regime disseminated information in Artsakh that we had come there to take Armenia resident soldiers back to Armenia or sow discord between the two societies. It is a lie, we went to Artsakh calling for unity,” said Safaryan and added they are determined to continue the struggle and have a revolt until April 24.