On 19 February, 2016, Vardges Gaspari was detained on the basis of the unlawful decision of the General Jurisdiction Court of Shengavit Administrative District of Yerevan. Anahit Ayvazi, Gaspari’s wife has not been given a permission to meet with her husband so far.

Today, on 24 February, Gaspari has been taken to “Norq” psychiatric centre to undergo a forensic psychiatric examination. Tigran Yegoryan and David Gyurjyan, Gaspari’s attorneys hurried to the psychiatric centre to participate in the examination after having been informed about it just before the examination. When they met with Gaspari, they found out that for already two days Gaspari has been on hunger and water strike. In this way Gaspari expresses his protest against the torture and the inhuman and degrading treatment he has been subjected to during the last two days. He demands that he be moved to a separate cell. According to Gaspari, he has been tortured (by beating and other methods) by his inmates of the cell N20 and later the cell N7 in the “Nubarashen” penitentiary under the direction and connivance of the prison administration. He has been subjected to psychological and physical pressures, inhuman and degrading treatment by beating, swearing, pouring cold water on him, threatening (“you won’t get out of here alive”), etc. All the complaints of Gaspari addressed to the prison administration have been left without a response.    

Only yesterday, on 23 February, the administration of Nubarashen penitentiary registered the fact of hunger and water strike. However, Gaspari was not moved to an appropriate cell with permanent medical monitoring, which is a gross violation of Article 3 of the European Court of Human Rights.    

Taking into account the above-mentioned we conclude that this is a political reprisal against Gaspari for his civic activism and his principles with a view to repressing disobedient citizens and people fighting against injustice, thereby creating an atmosphere of terror for others. 

We, the undersigned call on human rights defenders, domestic and international civil society, international organizations to interfere with all the possible methods of influence to try and stop the torture inflicted on V. Gaspari. At present, he is back in the same cell of the “Nubarashen” penitentiary, where he was tortured by his inmates during the last days. 

Gaspari himself applies the member of the National Assembly, Nikol Pashinyan, Zaruhi Postanjyan, Aram Manoukyan, Levon Zourabyan, Hrant Bagratyan and Tevan Poghosyan asking the latter to interfere in order to change the precautionary measure applied towards him and stop his tortures.  

Attorneys of Vardges Gaspari:

Tigran Yegoryan

David Gyurjyan

Lousineh Hakobyan