As mentioned in our previous publication, today, on 23 November 2021, the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights Dunja Mijatovic published the information provided by the RA Prosecutor General’s Office regarding Sashik Sultanyan’s case.
On November 18, Dunja Mijatovic addressed the RA Prosecutor General’s Office to get clarifications regarding criminal prosecution against human rights activist Sashik Sultanyan. In her letter addressed to the RA Prosecutor General Artur Davtyan, she particularly drew his attention to the fact that international and local human rights actors, including Special Rapporteurs of the UN, had already denounced prosecution against Sashik Sultanyan.
In her letter, the CoE Commissioner stressed that this negatively affects activity of human rights defenders, and in particular, those engaged in protection of rights of minorities․ Mrs. Mijatovic also reiterated Armenia’s human rights obligations and pointed out the need to guarantee human rights defenders’ freedom of expression, especially in terms of protection of human rights of minorities.
Court session of Sashik Sultanyan’s criminal case is to take place tomorrow, on 24 November, at 11 a.m., in Yerevan General Jurisdiction Court (Tigran Mets avenue 23/1, Yerevan).
Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly Vanadzor office advocates Arayik Zalyan and Samson Galstyan have undertaken protection of his rights in court. Advocate Ara Ghazaryan will also be involved.
Sashik Sultanyan was charged by the NSS investigator, who qualified the speech about violations of rights of Yezidis in Armenia as incitement of national enmity.
The criminal case is based on Sashik Sultanyan’s interview given to a representative of yezidinews.com in June 2020. During the conversation, he raises issues of Yezidis residing in Armenia and his concern that despite the efforts taken, there are still some unsolved issues related to securing rights of Yezidi citizens of the Republic of Armenia.
Below we present the full letter of the CoE Human Rights Commissioner addressed to the RA Prosecutor General and the RA Prosecutor General’s response letter.
Translated from English to Armenian by HCA Vanadzor.
The CoE Human Rights Commissioner’s letter
The RA Prosecutor General’s response letter