Helsinki Citizens' Assembly-Vanadzor

The Administrative Court obliged Shirak regional administration to provide HCA Vanadzor with departmental listings of information subject to encryption

February 22, 2019

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On February 8, 2019, RA Administrative Court, presided by E. Nahapetyan, satisfied HCA Vanadzor claim to oblige Shirak regional administration to provide information. The judgment of the Court was received on February 18.


On March 23, 2018, HCA Vanadzor applied to Shirak regional administration to get the copy of extended departmental list of information subject to encryption.  The Organization invoked the decision dated March 6, 2012, made by the RA Constitutional Court on the basis of HCA Vanadzor application. By the decision mentioned, the Constitutional Court recognized anti-constitutional Article 12 § 7 of the RA law on “State and official secrets”, i.e. “Departmental lists are encrypted and are not subject to being published” provision to the extent to which it does not apply to specific information subject to encryption.


Despite this, Shirak regional administration again concluded, based on the RA law on “State and official secrets” , that the list discovers a state and official secret and refused to provide information.


On April 11, 2019, HCA Vanadzor applied to the Court to receive the information required. HCA Vanadzor mentioned in the application that by refusing to provide information, Shirak regional administration violated the right of HCA Vanadzor to receive information enshrined in the European Convention of Human Rights and RA Law on “Freedom of information” enshrined in the RA Constitution.


At the same time, it was mentioned that restriction could be applied to the information, the dissemination of which could have grave consequences for the Republic of Armenia. Whereas, departmental lists do not discover such information, but rather give details on the spheres with the exception of cases, the titles of which could themselves contain confidential information.


Arayik Zalyan- the Organization’s lawyer – represented the interests of HCA Vanadzor in the Court.


On February 8, 2019, after examining the claim made by HCA Vanadzor for more than 10 months, the Administrative Court made a judgment to satisfy it.


The Court expressed the position that “the encryption of departmental lists is out of the legal regulation logic of information encryption of the RA Law on State and official secret”.  


The Administrative Court underscored that after the RA Constitutional Court, based on its decision dated March 6, 2012, recognized anti-constitutional and null and void Article 12 § 7 of the RA Law on “State and official secret”, state authorities are obliged to declassify the departmental lists of information subject to encryption and publicize them.


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