Araks Mamulyan

Garegin Chukaszyan: Pre-Parliament Activist, Arrested After Two Years in Hiding, Now Into 13th Day of Hunger Strike

Garegin Chukaszyan, a member of Armenia’s opposition Pre-Parliament movement who had gone underground in July 2016 after being accused by law enforcement for organizing “mass disorder but was arrested on April 23 of this year after appearing in public, has entered his thirteenth day of a hunger strike.

Tigran Yegoryan, Chukaszyan’s lawyer, says his client’s health has deteriorated to the point that his life is in danger.

Law enforcement accuse Chukaszyan of organizing events planned for April 24, 2015, the day Armenians were to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.

His case is tied to that of Jirayr Sefilyan, Gevorg Safaryan, Pavel Manukyan and Varujan Avetisyan.

Sefilyan and Safaryan have already been tried and convicted. The cases of Manukyan and Avetisyan have since been incorporated into the Sasna Dzrer case dealing with the seizure of a Yerevan police building in June 2016.

Chukaszyan was arrested when he was seen descending from the Tzitzernakaberd hill overlooking Yerevan. Yegoryan says his client was on his way to join the anti-government rally in Republic Square.

Chukaszyan, who regards himself a political prisoner, is calling for the immediate release of all political prisoners in Armenia.