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N 48 (215) 17th of March 2012, Friday

“HAYATSQ” daily

Why “Kyanki Khosk” did bring a claim against “Iravunk Media”


There was no harming information

As it is known, “Kyanki Khosk” sect, acting in RA, which the author cannot consider as a religious organization or church because of his religious beliefs, brought a claim against “Iravunk Media” LLC. The pre-judicial session at the Court of general jurisdiction of Kentron And Nork-Marash administrative regions on March 13 did not took place because the plaintiff did not come and according to the motion brought by his representative the session was delayed and appointed on March 23, at 15.30 o’clock.


The following interview is with the representative of the magazines “Iravunk”, “Iravunk-Hetaknnutyun” and ”Argumenti nideli v Armenii”, the director of “Lev Group” advocates’ office Levon Baghdasaryan.


-“What does “Kyanki Khosq” demand with its claim?”


-“The claim is brought about denying the information harming the reputation, dignity and good will, emerging religious detest and forcing to excuse”.

-“There are no financial demand, are there?”

-“At present there is no financial demand but the plaintiff may bring such in a future. Now the financial demand is concerning the compensating the judicial expenses”.


-“What grounds did the plaintiff consider basis for claiming that the reputation and dignity were harmed?”

-“According to the plaintiff his reputation, dignity and good will were harmed by some materials published by media. But in my opinion such grounds cannot lay in the basis of the claim about harming the reputation, dignity and good will because according to the precedents of the European Court of Human Rights freedom of expression according to the article 10, paragraph 1 is one of the grounds of democratic society which is a condition for development and self-implementation of its members.

Abovementioned principles get higher importance from the point of media. Media has important functions in the democratic society especially. Although media cannot exceed its limits especially concerning the rights of reputations of others, but it has a responsibility to spread information in which public is interested mostly.

Except that public has a right to get such information and thoughts. If an organization realizes some activities then media lightens its activity. Among such organizations can be non-governmental organizations, religious organizations and political organizations at the same time. Media has a responsibility to publish events, developments and functions in which public is mostly interested.

Going back to the issue of freedom of expression it should be noted that the trueness of the evaluating judgment does not need to be proven. Demand to present proofs for the trueness of the evaluating judgment cannot be realized and such demand may itself violate freedom of expression regulated by the Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights. There are many precedents of European Court of Human Rights concerning this issue”


-“According to the plaintiff what does especially harm the reputation, dignity and business reputation of the plaintiff?


-“I think there is no such thing. In addition to the brief the plaintiff has presented that the word  “sect“  is insulting for them. If such word is insulting for someone that does not necessarily mean that it is insulting word. I think mentioning “sectional organization” my client did not mean to insult the plaintiff organization. In my clients opinion the plaintiff is “sectional“ organization and realizes “sect“ functions. Even if the plaintiff organization is not a “sect“, I do not think that we insult their reputation, dignity or business reputation.

Moreover, the explanation of the word “sect“ is given in modern Armenian vocabulary. It is the following: 1. religious study going outside of the exact church; 2. a religion strange to the religion accepted in this country.  There exists one more explanation: direction exceeding any study. And for the word “nonconformist“ first of all the explanation is as following: satellite of the sect, and the second- someone governing with narrow group interests and dogmatic beliefs. For me and I think for most Armenian Christians “the given church” is Armenian Apostolic Holy Church with its ancient role. It is important to quote the Article 8.1of RA Constitution which stipulates: “RA recognizes Armenian Apostolic Holy Church as a one having special mission in the spiritual life of Armenians as a nation, in the development of the national culture and the guarantor of the national self-identification”


-“What else causation has the claim against “Iravunk Media”?

-“In “Iravunk” newspaper there was published the collage photo of the leader of that organization and actress Angela Sargsyan. None of them was naked or in otherwise harming the honor, dignity and business reputation situation. Moreover, the collage institution exists in all over the world and that is not new thing in media. I have seen such collages in the media of western democratic countries that if the approach there was not correct to that then the courts of U.S. and European countries would have been overflown with huge amount of such claims.

The hint of that collage was that Angela Sargsyan has connection with “Kyanki Khosk”. About such connection my client organization was speaking about, and there is evidence proving that connection. There are videos from which it is clear that Angela Sargsyan has participated in some events of that organization. The defendant objects that the mentioned person is a member of their organization, but my client plaintiff had never mentioned that it is so. There are other issues too but the main were those. The citations of legal norms in the legal brief cannot be a legal ground for satisfying it as the published materials do not violate any legal norm”.


Author: Arthur Hovhannisyan