The Statement of the Javakheti Armenian political activist Vahagn Chakhalyan on his refusal to participate in trial

On October 16, 2009 the Javakheti Armenian political activist Vahagn Chakhalyan, who is currently being held in Rustavi strict regime detention facility number 6,
Georgia, gave his attorney- Stepan Voskanyan, a statement of refusal to participate in the trial. Below is the full text of the statement (English translation is made by “Yerkir” Union).

The Statement of the Javakheti Armenian political activist Vahagn Chakhalyan on his refusal to participate in trial

On July 23, 2009 the Court of Appeals of Georgia began the hearings on the verdict against my father – Ruben Chakhalyan, my younger brother- Armen Chakhalyan and me.

As of today, the previous two court sessions show that the proceedings continue to be held with the same violations, as those committed during the trial in the Court of First Instance:

On October 16, 2009 the Javakheti Armenian political activist Vahagn Chakhalyan, who is currently being held in Rustavi strict regime detention facility number 6,
Georgia, gave his attorney- Stepan Voskanyan, a statement of refusal to participate in the trial. Below is the full text of the statement (English translation is made by “Yerkir” Union).

The Statement of the Javakheti Armenian political activist Vahagn Chakhalyan on his refusal to participate in trial

On July 23, 2009 the Court of Appeals of Georgia began the hearings on the verdict against my father – Ruben Chakhalyan, my younger brother- Armen Chakhalyan and me.

As of today, the previous two court sessions show that the proceedings continue to be held with the same violations, as those committed during the trial in the Court of First Instance:

          the judicial proceedings still take place without my French lawyer, Patrick Arapian, who was illegally denied registration by the Georgian authorities;
          the judge rejects almost all defense motions on unacceptable grounds;
          the Armenian translation of the court hearings is totally inadequate and incomprehensible,

Therefore, I do not have the opportunity to adequately follow the course of the trial, as well as to participate in it, that is – enjoy the minimum rights to protection, provided for by all the domestic and international laws.

Under these circumstances, my participation in the court proceedings would mean to legitimize, against my will, a shameful farce that takes place in the courtroom. Therefore, from this time on I refuse to participate in trial voluntarily.

Vahagn Chakhalyan, October 16 , 2009

 
2009թ. հոկտեմբերի 16-ին ջավախքահայ քաղաքական ակտիվիստ Վահագն Չախալյանը, որը ներկայումս պահվում է Ռուսթավիի №6 խիստ ռեժիմի գաղութում, իր փաստաբան` Ստեփան Ոսկանյանին փոխանցել է իր հայտարարությունը  դատական նիստերին մասնակցելուց հրաժարվելու վերաբերյալՍտորեւ ներկայացնում ենք այդ հայտարարությունն ամբողջությամբ:
 
Ջավախքահայ քաղաքական ակտիվիստ Վահագն Չախալյանի հայտարարությունը դատական նիստերին մասնակցելուց հրաժարվելու վերաբերյալ

2009թ. հուլիսի 23-ին Վրաստանի վերաքննիչ դատարանում մեկնարկեցին իմ հոր` Ռուբեն Չախալյանի, կրտսեր եղբոր` Արմենի եւ իմ նկատմամբ կայացված դատավճռի բողոքարկման դատալսումները:

Առ այսօր տեղի ունեցած երկու դատական նիստերի ընթացքը ցույց է տալիս, որ դատավարությունը շարունակվում է տարվել նույն կոպիտ օրինախատումներով, որոնք առկա էին եւ առաջին ատյանի դատալսումների ժամանակ: Դատավարությունն ընթանում է առանց իմ ֆրանսիական դատապաշտպան Պատրիկ Արապյանի, որին վրացական իշխանություններն անօրինական կերպով հրաժարվել են թույլ տալ իրականացնել իմ դատապաշտպանությունը, դատավորը անընդունելի հիմնավորումներով մերժում է պաշտպանական կողմի գրեթե բոլոր միջնորդությունները, դատալսումների հայերեն թարգմանությունը տարվում է խիստ անպատշաճ կերպով, ինչի հետեւանքով ես հնարավորություն չունեմ լիարժեքորեն հետեւել դրանցընթացքին, ինչպես նաեւ մասնակցել դրանց, այսինքն` իրականացնել բոլոր օրենքներով ինձ վերապահված պաշտպանության իրավունքը:

Նման պայմաններում շարունակել մասնակցել դատավարությանը նշանակում է իմ կամքին հակառակ օրինականացնել դատարանի դահլիճում տեղի ունեցող խայտառակ զավեշտախաղը: Ուստի, ես այլեւս հրաժարվում եմ կամովին մասնակցել դատական նիստերին:
 
Վահագն Չախալյան,  16 հոկտեմբերի 2009թ.
 
Լրացուցիչ տեղեկություններ ստանալու համար դիմել` Վահագն Չախալյանի փաստաբան Ստեփան Ոսկանյանին. Հեռ (բջջ.)` (+374) 91 38 37 30


Vahagn Chakhalyan Sentenced To 10 Years In Prison

Oratert Armenian News Agency, 8 April 2009

At that, the verdict doesn’t envisage substitution of part of the term by a fine. The Akhaltsikhe district court has found United Javakhk
Democratic Alliance leader Vahagn Chakhalyan guilty at all points and sentenced him to 10 years in prison in compliance with article 236.1 (purchase and possession of arms), article 225.2 (participation in disorders), article 226 (organization of public disorders), article 353.2 (resistance to police officer or public agent) and article 239.2b (hooliganism). At that,  the verdict doesn’t envisage substitution of part of the term by a fine.

The public prosecutor demanded 14-year imprisonment and 18 000 lari fine ($10,650) for Vahagn Chakhalyan, 4-year imprisonment and 6000 lari fine ($3550) for Ruben Chakhalyan and 3-year suspended sentence and 3000 lari fine ($1750) for Armen Chakhalyan. The court found Ruben Chakhalyan guilty under article 236.1 (purchase and possession of arms) and article 225.2 (participation in disorders) and imposed to 5,000 lari ($3000) on him. Armen Chakhalyan will have to pay a 2,000 lari ($1,200) fine under article 236.1 (purchase and possession of arms). Chakhalyans are going to appeal the verdict in the court of superior jurisdiction and European Court of Human Rights.

Yerkir Union has labeled the verdicts as a shameful outcome of the legal procedure.

Russian Sentry  18.09.2009

European Authorities Question Georgia About Vahagn Chakhalyan

Silvi Guillaume, the European parliamentarian, wrote a letter to Benita Ferrero-Waldner, the Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy with a request to order EU representatives to monitor in Tbilisi the case of Armenian political activist Vaagn Chakhalyan. According to the MP, Armenians in Georgia suffer language, social and religious discrimination – Tert.am.

The region, where Armenians are the most part of population, is deprived of transit ways, medical and social services, the letter says. The MP added that Chakhalyan, arrested in July 2008, was convicted for 10 years for doubtful reasons, as, in her view, the demands of his movement are of peaceful character.

She also informed the European Commissioner of the appeal on Chakhalyan’s case on September 18th, and added that in the course of previous hearings serious violations took place and the activist wasn’t even allowed to hire an attorney from France. The parliamentarian reminded that Georgia received EUR 15 mln for reforms of court system, and urged to demand a request on the reforms in that sphere from the Georgian authorities, and take measures to make Tbilisi comply with its obligations, Georgia Times reports.

Vahagn Chakhalyan, who’s the leader of the United Javakhk Democratic Alliance, is sentenced to 10 years in prison in Georgia. Ethnic and religious minorities living in Georgia who are victims of discrimination. Most particularly, the Armenian minority suffers language, social and religious discrimination. The region, where the Armenian minority constitutes a majority, is heavily deficient of transit roads, energy, health and social services. Javakh is an Armenian speaking region, Armenians are the majority and non-Armenians also speak Armenian there. However, the Georgian government conducts a campaign of forced Georgianization.

Vahagn Chakhalyan was arrested in July 2008 and sentenced to 10 years in prison for largely questionable charges. Interesting that the man had to be gotten out of the way, like others, just before the attack on South Ossetia. The peaceful demands of his movement are neither independentist nor autonomist and seek recognition of the civil rights of the Armenian minority in Georgia, when that country conducts a policy of assimilation since the dismantling of the Russian military bases in 2005. Vahagn Chakhalyan was transferred from his prison in Tbilisi in a prison in another town, 30 km away, where he fears for his safety, while his appeal is still pending. There have been death threats.

The procedures of arrest, investigation and trial at the court of 1st instance were interspersed with major violations by the judiciary (Justice of Georgia has even denied him the right to have a French lawyer). We cannot leave the Georgian authorities act in contravention of the international conventions on the right to a fair trial, all the more so as Georgia, under EU funding and by the European Neighborhood Policy, has received 15 Million Euro paid for "justice reforms." What is happening to this money and dare they to claim Georgia a "model of democracy"?

If you are looking for more coverage about Vahagn Chakhalyan and this subject please search Google.

 

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