&quotSeptember 25quot; Trial Defendant Denies Preliminary Evidence

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)During the Monday session of the so-called "September 25" trial– defendant Abet Petrossian testified that he was subjected to "strong" physical and psychological pressure. Petrossian explained that he was "beaten by everyone who entered the room," and that his wife and mother were threatened to be taken to a mental hospital–if they did not cooperate. Petrossian did not wish to disclose any names–as he feared for the safety and welfare of his family.

Based on his testimony–Petrossian denied the preliminary evidence–saying that they were written under pressure exerted by Justice Ministry agents. Petrossian denied charges of being a witness to the alleged beating of Babken Ararktsian by Ashot Terzian–and the charges of meeting Kolot Armen near the US Embassy in Yerevan. In fact–Petrossian clearly stated that he was not anywhere in the vicinity of the National Assembly Building during the entering of the Building.

Petrossian maintained that there were no clashes between the crowd and "red berets" on September 25. Moreover–according to him–soldiers said that they supported the demonstrators and therefore– they opened ways for the crowd.

Petrossian confirmed that Seyran Massoyan was singing Armenian patriotic songs and asked with surprise–"Is there any law that prohibits singing Armenian songs?"

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