Analytics and Interview

On 16 January 2015 late in the evening the website of the Ministry of Justice published a statement that the NGO Committee Against Torture had been added to the register of non-profit organizations designated as ‘foreign agents’.
Tanya Lokshina is the Russia program director at Human Rights Watch and Honorary Participant of International Youth Human Rights Movement: As the crisis in Ukraine escalated this spring, the Kremlin’s vicious crackdown on civil society also escalated. Space for independent civic activity in Russia is shrinking dramatically, but international policymakers and the media have been understandably too distracted to do much about it. Since early spring, it seems as though every week brings a new pernicious law or legislative proposal.
Earlier this year, the correspondent of Youth Human Rights Movement from Germany Jakob Stürmann interviewed Konstantin Baranov, member of the Coordination Council of the International Youth Human Rights Movement. They discussed so called “law against homosexual propaganda” and the overall situation of LGBT in Russia.  

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Oleg Sentsov, Olexander Kolchenko, Hennadiy Afanasiev and Oleksiy Chyrniy have been held in Russian jails for two years already under fabricated charges of ‘terrorism’. We consider it being necessary to express solidarity with those who are persecuted due to their pro-Ukrainian views, civic stand and desire for freedom in Russia-annexed Crimea.
Helsinki Committee of Armenia has published “Human Rights in Armenia 2014” Annual Report. The report reflects on the Right to Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Peaceful Assembly and Association, Torture, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment, Political Persecutions, Freedom of Conscience and Religion, The Rights of the Child, Protection of Labor Rights.
«We have a few questions for you,» a border guard told Sinaver Kadyrov, a Crimean Tatar activist, at the Armyansk checkpoint in northern Crimea on Jan. 23. Kadyrov was on his way to Kherson, in southern Ukraine, to fly to Turkey for medical treatment. It was the beginning of an ordeal that ended with a local court expelling him from Crimea, his home of almost 25 years.

Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority It is time to sit back and reflect.

Mark Twain


Youth Human Rights Movement

Challenges to the European democracy were discussed in Yerevan

The 6th session of the Council of Europe Forum for the Future of Democracy was held from 19th up to 21st of October in Yerevan (Armenia). The Forum was established by the Third Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Council of Europe in Warsaw in May 2005 with the aim “to strengthen democracy, political freedoms and citizens’ participation”. It is open to all member states and civil society, and is aimed at enabling the exchange of ideas, information and examples of best practices, as well as discussions on possible future action in the field of democracy. Forum is organized in close cooperation with the Parliamentary Assembly, Congress of Regional and Local Authorities, Venice Commission and other bodies of the Council of Europe.
This time the topic was “Perspectives 2020. Democracy in Europe - Principles and Challenges”.

Human rights activists complain the Secretary General of the Council of Europe about human rights violations in Armenia

Human rights defenders from Armenia send an appeal to Secretary General of the Council of Europe Mr. Thorbjørn Jagland, who is going to visit Yerevan in the next few days.

Another Young Armenian Human Rights Activist Assaulted

Narek Hovakimyan, a member of Armenia’s pro-democracy youth movement Hima, was attacked and beaten yesterday, June 25, 2008, in downtown Yerevan.

Narek, a 19-year old freshman at Yerevan State University, was approached by an unknown young man, as he was leaving school after classes at around 3:30pm, and was asked to “have a conversation” outside the campus.

Narek quickly realized it was a setup, and sought to avoid confrontation by walking away. The assailant followed him, blocking his way in an underground passage on the corner of Abovian and Koryun streets half a mile away, joined by another accomplice. Narek was beaten, and suffered head and stomach injuries. As the assailants fled the scene, Narek received assistance from bystanders, and was taken to the emergency care unit of St. Gregory the Illuminator Hospital in Yerevan.

In Yerevan passes rally in support of political prisoners

Notwithstanding the hot sun thousands of people are going up to the Matenadaran square, shouting “Freedom”, “Free, independent Armenia”, etc.

Presently the pavements from the Matenadaran to the Conservatoire after Komitas are overcrowded. The nearby cafés are full too. The protesters are people of different professions and ranks. The staff of a whole chair of Yerevan State University is participating in the rally. “We shall win a conjoint victory. Our spirit has risen and neither Serzh Sargssian nor Kocharian can break it. We need educated authorities,” they say.

Armen Aghasian, who has come from Kotayk Region by taxi, observes: “So many people cannot possibly be mistaken. The authorities can’t make us believe they are improving the situation in the country. Why have they closed the roads to Yerevan? They behave like cowards.”

Leading Human Rights Defender Assaulted Investigate Whether Mikael Danielian Was Targeted for His Human Rights Work

As part of their investigation into yesterday's assault of a leading human rights defender, the Armenian authorities should investigate the extent to which the victim's human
rights work was a motive for the attack, Human Rights Watch said today. Mikael Danielian, the chairman of the Armenian Helsinki Association, was wounded by an air gun on May 21, 2008 in Yerevan, the country's capital. Danielian was not seriously wounded.

"The circumstances of the attack on Mikael Danielian suggest that his prominence as a human rights defender was a motive," said Holly Cartner, Europe and Central Asia director at Human Rights Watch. "Given this, the Armenian authorities must consider it as part of a
thorough and objective investigation into the attack."

Mikael Danielian shot

21 may about 3:00 an unknown person fired a shot at the chairman of the Helsinki Association-Armenia Mikael Danielian on Terian Street, Yerevan. According to Danielian's friend they had hardly stopped under a traffic light when Danielian noticed a friend walking along the pavement. He stretched out to salute him.

Just at that moment a BMW began honking continuously from behind. In reply to Danielian’s inquiries a fellow got off the BMW and started railing at the human rights activist and calling him a CIA “agent” who defends the interests of gays. Afterwards, he took out a gun and shot at Danielian’s chest. Fortunately, the wound wasn't serious as according to the preliminary investigation the criminal had shot from a pneumatic gun.

The actions in memory of the victims in Armenia

On April 9 40 days have passed since the violent dispersal of the demonstrations in Yerevan, organized to protest against the disputable results of elections in Armenia. During this dispersal at least 8 persons were killed and several hundreds wounded. Besides, an unknown number of people were imprisoned.

On this very day, when the Orthodox believers usually commemorate their dead, the new president Serzh Sargisyan, who sanctioned the violence, had his inauguration. Up to the moment no actions were made to investigate crimes, many people are still arrested and the situation in general has not been cleared yet.

On this date, which coincided with the International Day of Youth Actions for Human Rights, actions of protest and memory were organized in three countries C Armenia, Russia and Ukraine.

Open Letter from the Wives, Mothers, and Sisters of Victims of Political Persecution in Connection with the 2008 Armenian Presidential Election

Open Letter from the Wives, Mothers, and Sisters of Victims of Political Persecution in Connection with the 2008 Armenian Presidential Election

We are writing this letter as the wives, mothers, and sisters of those citizens of the Republic of Armenia who have been subjected to illegal measures by the authorities in connection with the February 19, 2008 presidential election, during the pre-election process, at the time of the election, and in the days since then.

These measures include violence, brutality, kidnapping, unlawful detention, home searches without any legal justification accompanied by extensive damage to property, and the arrests of our husbands, sons, and brothers, almost all on similar charges: “Criminal actions against the state with the aim of overthrowing the government.”