Helsinki Citizens' Assembly-Vanadzor

The expert recorded that Edgar Tsatinyan might have been dragged on the ground

December 17, 2019

Activities | Edgar Tsatinyan | Legal Support | Legal Support | Rights | Right to Freedom from Torture | Right to life | Publications | News

8 months after the initiation of discussion procedure on the death of Edgar Tsatinyan who died in hospital on April 8, 2019, having been subjected to violence in the police division, the RA Human Rights Defender staff provided information on the process of the case. 


Back on April 15, 2019, the Human Rights Defender started a discussion procedure on the basis of media publications, but has not published any information regarding the results. 


On June 2019, after undertaking the protection of the rights of E. Tsatinyan’s legal successor, Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly-Vanadzor lawyer Arayik Zalyan also applied to the Human Rights Defender to get information about the actions taken.  


8 months passed since the initiation of the discussion procedure and 6 months passed since the inquiry sent by A. Zalyan, but the Human Rights Defender has not publicized any information. Yesterday we received the Defender staff’s letter dated December 9, which, besides the publicized information, also informed that E.Tsatinyan’s mother submitted a written complaint to the Human Rights Defender during the reception at the Human Rights Defender staff. The discussion procedure continues.  


After E.Tsatinyan’s death, a criminal case was initiated in the RA Special Investigation Service on the basis of torture in the police division. It was only about a month after the incident that the second criminal case became known. The latter was initiated in the RA Investigative Committee on the basis of improper medical aid.


Upon learning in the Special Investigation Service about the criminal case initiated in the Investigative Committee, HCA Vanadzor lawyer Arayik Zalyan applied to the RA Prosecutor General’s Office to make the criminal case, in full volume, available to the injured party and transfer the case to the RA Special Investigation Service. The Prosecutor General’s Office “saw no necessity” to merge the two criminal cases and investigate it in the Special Investigation Service.   


A. Zalyan’s application to transfer, according to the jurisdiction, the criminal case initiated on the basis of improper medical aid was also rejected: according to administrative distribution, the death case recorded in “Armenia” MC should not be investigated by Avan and Nor Nork administrative disctricts’ investigation division, since the institution that made the report is located in Ajapnyak administrative district. 


The lawyer also submitted other petitions to the Special Investigation Service and Investigative Committee on taking investigative actions. 


It is noteworthy that the forensic medical conclusion recorded that while being taken to hospital, E.Tsatinyan’s lip and set of teeth were injured and his right arm was bandaged around the wrist with a tie, which indicates that he had been subjected to violence in the police division.   


The expert also recorded that E.Tsatinyan’s clothes were stretched in the shoulders, which could be caused by pulling the clothes, and there were also traces of contact with uneven surface, probably the ground. In other words, the expert recorded that besides being subjected to violence, E.Tsatinyan might have been dragged on the ground. 


Moreover, the RA Health and Labor Inspectorate recorded violations in E.Tsatinyan’s medical documents both in “Saint Gregory the Illuminator” MC, where he was transferred by ambulance car and in “Armenia” MC, where he died.

Nevertheless, we should record that although criminal cases initiated on the basis of violation of the right to life and torture  are subject to quick investigation and there have been essential findings by forensic medical conslusion and study conducted by the Inspectorate, neither the Special Investigation Service, nor the Investigative Committee make sufficient attempts to discover the perpetrators and hold them liable. And it took the Human Rights Defender 8 months after the announcement of discussion procedure to inform that nothing has been done so far.


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