At March 3 NA sitting, the Chairman of the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC) Ruben Vardazaryan answered to the MPs’ questions, a big part of which was related to his statement made on November 15, 2020. It particularly says “Today, the answer to the unfortunate question that has shaken the public for about two years and which is shameful for the judges will be given.”
Reading the above-mentioned part of the statement, the deputies noted that the call was political which the SJC Chairman had no right to do it.
Though, Vardazaryan has stated that he will not answer the off-topic questions, nevertheless, he has said that there are judges who have bad reputation, but there are also many professionals.
Further Q&A session was held without editing.
Suren Grigoryan: “What was the reason that the day of the statement coincided with the day of the examination of measure of restraint of the leader of Hayrenik/Motherland Party Artur Vanetsyan?”
Ruben Vardazaryan: “My statement has had no connection with the discussion of any issue or a person. I saw tension in our society in those days and made the statement. Moreover, you may probably imagine that I have not worked out the text of that statement, it has not been a statement made at the moment, I have thoroughly studied and researched every speech, every word, phrase, sentence several times and I have kept the boundaries that will not let me to go over the rules of that political restraint.”
Gevorg Papoyan: “An attempted murder was made on the RA NA Speaker. Two similar cases took place in our country: the first one succeeded and the second case, fortunately, did not succeed. I think that most of all you and the judicial power should be concerned about the fact that we will never have such case. What happened after your statement of November 15? All people accused in that attempted murder were released. All videos are available where they say “kill,” “we have already killed, let’s go.” Was your call related to this case or not? As the SJC Chairman, present your observations.”
Ruben Vardazaryan: “I will try to answer as a RA citizen. I am a person like you who sees it all on TV. I am surprised and indignant at what happened to the NA Speaker. As an RA citizen, I have many questions for the judicial power. Now, I will answer as the SJC Chairman, I have not acquainted with the materials of the case, I have no right, it is an offence which is criminally prosecuted.
Nikolay Baghdasaryan: “Today, the judicial system is independent of the power, but it is not independent of the previous power. The latter lead the judiciary and give instructions while making certain decisions. You have been the President of the Court of the First Instance of the Center for many years. Before the revolution, during your presidency, how many arrest warrants do you remember related to the opposition who have been recognized illegal?”
Ruben Vardazaryan: “It is your subjective opinion. I think that today the judicial power does not depend on the previous power.” If you have such facts, you can apply to the Special Investigation Service or the Prosecutor General’s Office, or you can provide me with the facts and I will apply. What you are saying is unacceptable and highly condemnable. As for the statistics, let me mention that about 30% of arrests have always been illegal.”
Nikolay Baghdasaryan: “The judges did not take such steps before the revolution. You have never made such decision yourselves.”