On October 31 the National Assembly is going to discuss the bill of amnesty which according to Artak Zeynalyan, acting minister of justice is going to be an unprecedented amnesty in the Armenian history.
In the recent 10 years this will be the 4th amnesty. As Artak Zeynalyan noted this is a humanitarian act on the occasion of Yerevan’s 2800th and RA independence 100th anniversaries.
Zara Hovhannisyan, human rights advocate who attended the discussion, said; “With the amnesty we give a systemic political evaluation to the previous authorities.”
Avetik Ishkhanyan says that the bill was discussed in the justice group and their recommendations will be sent to parliament.
“Amnesty is a humanitarian act and should not be viewed as a political act. According to international principles the victim’s opinions should be considered in case of amnesty. The difference between pardon and amnesty is that pardon is applied to individuals. Amnesty does not target individuals, it is applied to all individuals and all categories. Given that the bill of amnesty is adopted in the parliament it should meet the principles of right prevalence, that is to say legality, prevention of arbitrariness as well as excluding segregation”, Ishkhanyan said.
According to the human rights advocate during drafting the amnesty law engaging the public and particularly the victims raises the legitimacy of the law. Besides according to Ishkhanyan the bill includes provisions with which it is rather pardon than amnesty.
“Namely point 11 of article 2 relates to specific individuals and specific issue, people who committed a crime in police patrol detachment in 2016. Article 4, point 11 also targets one person and defines that in case of judicial act that came into effect legally amnesty does not require the convicts’ consent. Don’t get me wrong, I am for amnesty to Sasna Tsrer, but that should not be specifically targeted rather with principles of law”, Ishkhanyan says.
“As for Nubarashen penitentiary institution it must be closed down. They may grow mushroom there for its high humidity or made into a museum”, Ishkhanyan added.
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