“Aravot” reports that Gagik Shamshian, a well-known photojournalist, has again accused police officers of attacking him during an opposition demonstration in Yerevan. The paper says Shamshian will lodge a complaint to police chief Alik Sargsian and Prosecutor-General Aghvan Hovsepian. He will demand that they launch criminal proceedings against two senior police officers who allegedly hit and verbally abused him. One of them, Arayik Petrosian, is the deputy chief of the police department of Yerevan’s central administration district.
A similar complaint relating to an incident that occurred in October 2007 has also been lodged by Gohar Vezirian, a correspondent for “Chorrord Ishkhanutyun.” The paper quotes Vezirian as saying that Petrosian personally hit her at the time. The journalist has also sent to the police what she calls video evidence of the violence.
“Hayots Ashkhar” backs police claims that fractured jaws and pieces of skull shown in opposition video of the March 1 clashes in Yerevan belonged to animals, and not human beings. The pro-government paper describes the authors of the video as “scum.” “Will the scum again stay unpunished?” it asks.
Aram Safarian, a member of the parliament commission investigating the clashes, tells “Iravunk” that he is skeptical about the ad hoc body’s ability to uncover the truth. Safarian says he agreed to join the commission only because his Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK) ordered him to do so. “The chairman of my party assigned me to attend meetings of this commission,” he says. “I am performing my partisan duties.” One of the things Safarian does not like is that “it is a handful of journalists from opposition newspapers, rather than the radical opposition, that are working with the commission.” “Thus, there has been an attempt to denigrate our commission,” he says, adding that the authenticity of the controversial opposition video must be determined by local and foreign forensic experts, rather than journalists.