Opposing demonstrations underway outside courthouse ahead of ex-President Robert Kocharyan trial
YEREVAN, MAY 14, ARMENPRESS. Opposing demonstrations are taking place outside a Yerevan courthouse ahead of the second day trial of ex-President Robert Kocharyan in the March 1 case. On one side are supporters of Kocharyan, while on the other side are protesters.
Today the court is expected to deliver a decision regarding Kocharyan’s peremptory challenge against the presiding Judge Davit Grigoryan.
Then, the court will start the hearing regarding Kocharyan’s bail measure, a standard procedure if a defendant is jailed.
The March 1 case refers to the 2008 post-presidential election unrest in Yerevan when eight protesters and two security officers were killed in clashes during large demonstrations against alleged vote rigging. Kocharyan was the outgoing president at that time. He is accused of unlawfully ordering the military to interfere and disperse the protests.
Robert Kocharyan is charged with “overthrowing Constitutional order” and “accepting particularly large bribe”.
Other indicted officials are: ex-Defense Minister Seyran Ohanyan (overthrowing Constitutional order). In 2008 Ohanyan served as Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces; Yuri Khachaturov (overthrowing Constitutional order). In 2008, Khachaturov was the Deputy Minister of Defense; Armen Gevorgyan (conspiracy to overthrow Constitutional order, accepting particularly large bribe and money laundering). Gevorgyan served as Chief of Staff of the Presidential Administration. Gevorgyan’s most recent government position was Deputy Prime Minister.
Yuri Khachaturov is an Armenian general who served as Secretary General of the CSTO until being recalled by Armenia for criminal proceedings in 2018.
They all deny wrongdoing.
Edited and translated by Stepan Kocharyan