Bleyan Beaten While in Pre Trial Detention

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–Deputy chief of Nubarashen’s jail Gevorgian subjected Ashot Bleyan to moral and physical pressure on August 18. At a press conference on August 20–Bleyan’s lawyer Karo Karapetian quoted his client as saying that the beating had been accompanied by exclamations "it serves you right–why did you go to Baku?"–"it is for your mean nature," and "why did you publish articles on human rights and liberties in the Aravot daily?" Immediately after being beaten Bleyan was put to a punishment cell where he was denied paper and a pen to appeal the acts applied against him.

As a result Bleyan’s health condition sharply deteriorated–said a member of the Public Council in Defense of Ashot Bleyan–who was allowed to see Bleyan on August 18 in the presence of the investigator and 20 soldiers on guard outside the room. "One might get an impression that the two people meeting in that room were Mafia bosses plotting an escape," the man added.

Lawyer Karapetian and the Council members have addressed a letter to Armenia’s Prosecutor General and Interior Ministry Department Chief in connection with the violence used against Bleyan. Describing the violent methods applied against Bleyan as political persecution–the authors of the letter demanded that Ashot Bleyan be taken from Nubarashen to the Interior Ministry’s jail for pre-trial confinement. They called for the discontinuation of punitive measures and resumption of the preliminary investigation.


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