Law 15:20 23/10/2020 Armenia

Lawyer says new applications on Armenian POWs in Azerbaijan to be filed to ECHR today

Three cases concerning Armenian prisoners of war in Azerbaijan are currently under consideration at the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), lawyer Siranush Sahakyan told on Friday, adding that two applications have been prepared and are being submitted now, while eight others will be filed to the court later in the day.

"New videos about Armenian captives have been released today. The POWs of the videos have been identified, most of their families have applied to us, but the cases are still in the process. At the end of the day, we will sum up the package of applications and send them to the court, tomorrow we will be able to provide more details," the lawyer said.

Earlier on October 14, the former Minister of Justice, lawyer Artak Zeynalyan said that two Armenian servicemen, Areg Sargsyan and Narek Amirjanyan, had been taken prisoner by Azerbaijani forces during the Nagorno-Karabakh hospitalizes. On behalf of the family members of the captured servicemen, a group of lawyers requested the European Court to apply an urgent measure on 11 October. The court decided to ask the Azerbaijani government for information on the Armenian POWs, setting October 22 as the deadline for a response.

Today, on October 23, Armenian lawyers are looking forward to the ECHR writ on the information about the captured soldiers received from Azerbaijan.

"It will help us understand what position Azerbaijan has expressed and what information it has provided on prisoners of war. The question over the possible swap of POWs is very important. The ECHR has asked Azerbaijan when they plan to exchange captives and who are included on that list," she said.

Videos about the captured Armenian servicemen often circulate on social media, which serve as a source of evidence for lawyers.

"Despite the ongoing judicial proceedings, Azerbaijan even disputes the authenticity of those videos in an abstract way. I would not say that they have achieved any success, but in the future we must take into account the fact that an attempt will be made to question the authenticity of those videos,” Sahakyan said.

Asked whether an application on Azeri prisoners of war was submitted by Azerbaijan to the ECHR, the lawyer said that she had obtained no information on the matter from public sources.

"If there was such an application, I suppose there would be communication with the Armenian government within the same period," she said.

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