Helsinki Citizens' Assembly-Vanadzor

In the frame of an application filed with the ECtHR, the RA Government admitted that there were no sufficient grounds for detention and proposed a compensation for the damage caused

March 22, 2021

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In May 2020, as a result of the application filed with the European Court of Human Rights, Vladimir Khandamiryan - accused of murder and held in detention until the court’s judgment - received a compensation in the amount of EUR 2300 from the RA Government.


Back in 2017, HCA Vanadzor advocate Arayik Zalyan undertook the protection of V. Khandamiryan’s rights and made a motion to the Court to apply a more lenient measure of restraint. However, both Lori Region General Jurisdiction Court of First Instance and the higher courts left the decision on detention unchanged.  


Arayik Zalyan mentioned in the appeal that besides the condition that the criminal case lacked a circumstance proving V. Khandamiryan’s relation to the crime he was accused of, there were also no grounds - established by the provisions of the RA Criminal Procedure Code - necessary for a decision on applying detention as a measure of restraint.V. Khandamiryan did not avoid the investigation, he appeared before the police on his own will, and then as ordered by the Police, after which he was detained. When making the decision on detention, the Court did not take into account the circumstances characterizing the person and the condition that his wife and two infant children were in his care, as well as the living conditions of the family. 


The motion to replace detention with bail as a measure of restraint was also groundlessly refused, and this allows claiming that the Court makes arbitrary decisions.


In 2018, Arayik Zalyan applied to the European Court of Human Rights based on the violation of Article 5 (Right to liberty and security) and Article 6 (Right to a fair trial) of the European Convention on Human Rights.


The ECtHR communicated the application and received the RA Government’s proposal on a friendly settlement. The RA Government admitted that they violated V. Khandamiryan’s right to liberty and security and proposed to compensate - in the amount of EUR 2300 - for the damage caused. In May 2020, the applicant accepted the proposal and has already received the compensation.  


It is noteworthy that the RA Government admitted that application of detention with respect to V. Khandamiryan was not sufficiently grounded and that it violated his rights. The widespread application of detention as a measure of restraint is typical of the RA judicial system: even in cases when it is possible to apply a different, more lenient measure of restraint, courts are still guided by the established vicious practice and apply detention. 


This decision has a crucial importance in eliminating this practice. It is also important that the violation of V. Khandamiryan’s rights was acknowledged by the Government and the issue was solved with friendly settlement and the compensation was not obliged by the ECtHR.

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