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Property Ownership: Nareg Hartounian’s Case

Nareg Hartounian’s case is just another example of serious and widespread violations of human rights in Armenia.   What makes this case particularly troubling is the fact that it may also stand out as a serious violation of property rights.   Well, let’s hope that it will not be the outcome. 

Property rights are central to the legal and political order for societies.  Without such rights, it is not feasible to have a democratic society that can guarantee freedom for its citizens.   It is this unconditional protection that the court systems must provide to all.  This is the right that propels societies into economic growth by providing favorable and secure environment for investments.  As Harvard historian Niall Ferguson argues in his latest book, Civilization: The West and The Rest, the system in the United States is based on property rights, and it is one of the main reasons why North America has been more successful than Central/South America.

It is hard to explain to US or European investors the bizarre cases where several parties claim ownership of the same property in Armenia.  Or the moment that you become a land owner in Armenia, it is wise to build a high wall around your property so that you can physically stop others from claiming ownership. It is also hard to explain the case with Nareg, who has arbitrarily become the subject of abuse and extortion.  This sends a very unfortunate yet clear signal to the world investment community which shows that property rights are not respected in Armenia and foreign properties and investments may be at risk. 

Freedom does not only include freedom of speech and religion.  It is also freedom to own.  And let’s not forget that this freedom is protected by the Constitution of the Republic of Armenia.

Article 31
Everyone shall have the right to freely own, use, dispose of and bequeath the property belonging to him/her.

I admire Nareg and the fight that he and his family put out.  It is a fight to preserve the most fundamental principal upon which a true democratic society is built on, one that is based on guaranteed protection of human rights and property rights.  Nareg is clearly the underdog in this fight.    I do hope and pray that the judges in Armenia take this high-profile case very seriously, protect Nareg and his family’s properties in Armenia, and do not make a mockery of the Constitution.

Eduard Sargsyan

Comments (8)

Edgarin dimakazertsox
Karen kam aveli jisht Edgar Gharibyan, nuynisk hervic sparnum es? de iharke da qo vojn e, urish ban qezanic spasel petq el cher, poxaren@ Sevakin chtoxneir u hervic eluytner chunenair, ete edqan gnahatum eir Sevakin, chdavajanir!!! qez qich er qo aratsner@?
6. Karenin - Anzen achqov al gereva` Sevagi desagen es.
Sarkisin,chgitem duq ov eq ardyoq menq canot enq?es shpvel em Sevaki shrjapati u kareli e asel Nareki shrjapati het el,duq charachar sxalvum eq nranc hamematelov seropi het,Narek@ ir ashxarn uni,isk Sevak@ ir tesaket@,aveli shat es shpvel em Sevaki het,na vorpes mard artakarg mard e,isk ete nranq problemner unen irar het,apa klucvi,amen inch uni skizb ev verj,heriq e Sevakin kpneq,axr duq inch giteq Sevak@ incher uni arac nuin Nareki,kam nra @ntaniqi hamar,terti mi eresn eq kardum,uxaki Sevaki mot hima zhamanakavor dzhvarutyunner en,es heru em,baic indz gites Sevak, es qo het em,Duq giteq Sevak,vor es im xosqi tern em,Arturik u Ani erevi moracel eq indz?...................zguish exeq dzer qaileri mej
Sevag, Nareg, Serop (Der-Boghossian)... - DZER NMANNER KHAYTARRAKUM HAYOTS SPYURRQ@.
We need to hear the story from both sides - what is the truth! too much talk and no evidence!
Narek@ karoxacav havaqel ir hamaxohnerin,aisinqn uni henaran,baic hakarak@ kasei Sevaki masin,na korcrec ir amenahavatirmnerin....husov em haskacaq um masin e xosq@,nrancov er na Sevak,nrancov er harcer lucum,baic hima arden vaxenalov e poxoc durs galis...
es amen inchi patchar@,aisinqn Nareki u Sevaki haraberutyunneri mexavor@ erku hogi en, voronc qaj chanachum en ev Narek@ ev Sevak@,aid erku hogin irenc ashxatakicneric en,voronq karoxacan ainpes anel ,vor qavor u sanik darcan tshnaminer,vor el irar het zardarov hac chen utum... xndrem ete kan harcer...
harcreq asem te ov ove,ov um handep inch partakanutyun uni,axr vochmekd chgiti te ov umic inch e stacel kam inch uni stanalu,kam inchqan e stacel,u @ndhanrapes vochinchic texyak cheq

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