Helsinki Citizens' Assembly-Vanadzor

The position of HCA Vanadzor regarding the RA draft law “On amending the RA Criminal Code”

December 5, 2019

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Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly-Vanadzor expressed its stance regarding NA deputies Naira Zohrabyan, Vahe Enfiajyan and Shake Isayan’s draft law “On making amendments to the RA Criminal Code”.


The deputies suggested amending the RA Criminal Code of April 18, 2003 with new articles, namely, Article 360.1 (Inciting a serviceman’s suicide by negligence) and Article 360.2 (Inciting a serviceman’s suicide with indirect intent).


Giving importance to the issues raised by the RA National Assembly deputies, HCA Vanadzor still finds that aggrevating the punishment for the crime of inciting a serviceman’s suicide is not a sufficient condition to reduce the number of suicides in the RA armed forces. For the prevention of suicides resulting from the breach of statutory relations in the armed forces, it is necessary to envisage a clear and effective mechanism of responsibility. It is definite that the cause of the commission of the crime under discussion is not only the action done by a person, but also the inaction of a person (persons) holding certain positions in the RA armed forces. 


In case the corpus delicti suggested by the draft is implemented, it is necessary to set a punishment for persons holding a position in the RA armed forces with the obligation and function regarding military discipline, training of the staff, educational, social and moral-psychological  state of the staff, prevention of legal violations among the staff. Based on the mentioned conditions, not only will the number of suicides reduce in the RA armed forces, but it will also be a preventive measure of crimes.  


Considering the suggested draft in the context of RA legislation and case law of RA Cassation Court and European Court of Human Rights, HCA Vanadzor presented recommendations of amendments and reformulations. 


On December 4, 2019, the position was emailed to Vladimir Vardanyan, Chairman of Standing Committee on State and Legal Affairs of the National Assembly, and  Naira Zohrabyan, Chairperson of RA NA Standing Committee on Protection of Human Rights and Public Affairs.


You can find the position of HCA Vanadzor in full HERE


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