Politics 15:59 22/06/2020 Armenia

Armenian parliament passes draft constitutional amendments in first reading

The Armenian National Assembly adopted in the first reading on Monday the draft constitutional amendments to suspend the powers of the chairman and several judges of the Constitutional Court.

All 88 lawmakers of the ruling My Step faction and one independent deputy taking part in the extraordinary session voted for the bill.

The opposition Prosperous Armenia and Bright Armenia Parties have boycotted the session, describing the proposed amendments as “unconstitutional”.

"With this bill, we eliminate the confusion related to the Constitutional Court, which from now on will be more homogeneous, all judges will be equal," said My Step deputy Vladimir Vardanyan.

Addressing Minister of Justice Rustam Badasyan, the MP asked whether the retiring judges of the Constitutional Court would have access to all the social and other guarantees provided for them if not for the constitutional reforms.

In response, Basayan referred to the advisory opinion of the Venice Commission on the draft amendments, outlining the difference between the status of judges as one of the key issues and highlighting the amendments in terms of combining the terms of office of judges.

"As for the pensions of judges, the right will be in place, because a provision has been fixed from the moment of the adoption of the Constitutional Court law, which refers to the right to pensions of judges who have been in office for already 12 years," Badasyan said.

Vladimir Vardanyan added that the government is moving towards an institutional solution which has gained approval from the European structures. 

Source Panorama.am
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