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Europe calls on Georgian court to be honorary2009-10-20 17:46
Before the appeal case of Armenian activist Vaagn Chakhalyan is heard on Friday he has support of the Armenian diaspora in France calling on Georgia to stop the unjust trial and restore the rights of the political prisoner.
The judicial clownery over Javakh activist Vaagn Chakhalyan will continue this week. Georgia's Armenian is incarcerated for defending national values and interests violated by local authorities. His case is too thin - that is why he's disallowed to have independent European lawyers.
In this connection the Coordination Council of Armenian organizations in France (CCAF) called on the Georgian authorities to stop unjust proceedings and restore all Vaaghn Chakhalyan's rights.
GeorgiaTimes repeatedly wrote how this case had been "framed up" and the verdict of 10 years' imprisonment for storage of arms, resistance to authorities and most importantly for organization of mass disorder.
What triggered the protest actions in Javakhetia in 2006 were local elections. Then the organization led by Chakhalyan - United Javakh - campaigned against the majority of ethnic Georgians to govern the Armenian-inhabited region.
The disorder ended in an explosion near the house of Akhalaki police chief Samvel Petrosyan followed by two murders of policemen during searches. After that the man-hunt began for United Javakh leaders. One of them, Gurgen Shirinyan, was lucky to flee before being arrested. In December he was sentenced in his absence to 17 years' imprisonment for murder.
Chakhalyan and his family were arrested, indicted and tried without the expert assessment of the arms found in their house. The father and younger brother are subject to fines, and Vaagn goes to jail for 10 years. Immediately after the judgment was delivered French Armenians held a rally in support of Chakhalyan near the Georgian Embassy in Paris.
Upon his cassation appeal now the cassation proceedings are underway.
As early as in winter local lawyers refused to defend Chakhalyan. Patrick Arapyan, a French specialist, was turned out by the authorities. Now it's Stepan Voskanyan, an Armenian citizen, defending his interests. However almost all his petitions are rejected. Besides the Georgian-Armenian interpretation of hearings doesn't make it possible to offer immediate reaction to the arguments of the prosecution.
In early August, Voskanyan says, Vaagn was beaten by Tbilisi prison officers. The lawyer considered it as the response of the authorities to the wave of public discontent over persecution of the Armenian activist.