RA CIVIL APPEAL COURT STARTS EXAMINING APPEAL AGAINST DECISION TO DEPORT VAHAGN CHAKHALIAN FROM ARMENIA

Noyan Tapan
http://www.nt.am/news.php?shownews=116338
Au g 8, 2008

YEREVAN, AUGUST 8, NOYAN TAPAN. The RA Civil Appeal Court presided over
by Judge Astghik Kharatian on August 7 started examining the appeal
against the police decision on deportation of Vahagn Chakhalian, a
Georgian citizen, by administrative order. The appeal had been filed
by V. Chakhalian's representative - Tigran Hayrapetian. Earlier the
court of Yerevan's Kentron and Nork-Marash communities (presided over
by Judge Gayane Karakhanian) dismissed the application of activist of
"United Javakhk" democratic alliance V. Chakhalian to invalidate the
police decision on his deportation by administrative order.

Representative of V. Chakhalian said that the conclusion of a
commission rather than of the RA police head (as envisaged by law)
formed the ground for V. Chakhalian's deportation. Even if there is
such a decision of the police head, they are not familiar with it. The
deportation was done before the court decision took force: to recap,
the court of first instance of Shirak marz found Chakhalian guilty
of illegally crossing the border and gave him one-year suspended
sentence with 18 months' probation. In the words of V. Chakhalian's
representative, the impression is it was not a deportation by
administrative order but an act of extradition with the aim of
handing V. Chakhalian over to the Georgian authorities. The Georgian
authorities arrested V. Chakhalian who is now in custody. According
to T. Hayrapetain, the principle of presumption of innocence was
violated with respect to V. Chakhalian who was illegally deprived of
freedom for 11 hours.

The representative of the respondent did not attend the court hearing
examining the appeal, so the plaintiff requested to be given some
time so that at the next sitting V. Chakhalian or his representative
could present Chakhalian's activities and the judge could make sure
that these activities do not pose any danger to Armenia. It will be
announced later about the day of the next siiting to be held in about
2 months.

To recap, activist of "United Javakhk" alliance Vahagn Chakhalian was
arrested in 2006, then he was convicted and deported to Armenia. After
the expolsion at the house of Akhalkalaki police head Samvel Petrosian
on July 17, 2008, over ten members of "United Kavakhk" were taken to
police by force and violence. The father and brother of alliance member
Gurgen Shirinian were arrested, while V. Chakhalian, his father and
under-age brother were arrested on July 21. Mmebers of the board of
"United Javakhk" claim that this attitude of Georgain law enforcers
is the result of V. Chakhalian's deportation from Armenia.