Ararat Zurabian Released Confined to City

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–Ararat Zurabian–head of Yerevan’s Kentron district arrested in connection with the incident of December 28–was released January 5 under a written undertaking not to leave the city–Tigran Janoyan–Zurabian’s lawyer–said.

On December 28–at 9 p.m.–a drunk Zurabian was disturbing public order on one of the capital’s main streets and would not comply with police demanding him to stop his hooligan actions. A criminal case was initiated in connection with the incident.

Zurabian’s lawyer said interior officials had illegally kept his client in detention for 24 hours. Even though Zurabian was formally under criminal investigation–he was deprived of his right to have a lawyer under the pretext that he was interrogated as a witness. The lawyer disagreed with the protocol statement alleging that Zurabian had triggered a conflict and resisted police.

Zurabian’s second challenge against the Investigation Department of the Interior Ministry was also rejected as groundless–Yerevan Prosecutor Aram Tamazian told Noyan Tapan. He said the impartial investigation into the case was beyond doubt.

Zurabian and his lawyer twice challenged the Investigation Department of the Interior Ministry claiming that the interests existing within the department would be an obstacle to an unbiased investigation of the case–and also they questioned the legality of the actions of the traffic policemen concerned.

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