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Armenia: Launch of HELP course on prohibition of ill-treatment for investigators and prosecutors

Yerevan 5 November 2018
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Armenia: Launch of HELP course on prohibition of ill-treatment for investigators and prosecutors

The Council of Europe’s Human Rights Education for Legal Professionals (HELP) course on the Prohibition of Ill-treatment was launched for a group of investigators of the Investigative Committee of the Republic of Armenia (IC) and the Special Investigation Service of the Republic of Armenia (SIS), as well as prosecutors from the General Prosecutor’s Office of the Republic of Armenia. Investigators from the specialised unit – the Department for the Investigation of Torture of the SIS are also participants to this course.

The event was opened and participants were welcomed by Natalia Voutova, Head of the Council of Europe office in Yerevan and Anahit Manasyan, Deputy Rector of the Academy of Justice. Following the general presentation of the HELP programme, the participants benefitted from a presentation by and discussion with Eric Svanidze, international consultant and author of the course, where they discussed practical implications of the case law of the European Court of Human Rights under Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights in the Armenian national legal context.

The national tutor of the course, Gohar Simonyan, Head of the Department for the Prevention of Torture and Ill-treatment of the Human Rights Defender’s Office of Armenia, presented the planning for the implementation of the course in the upcoming two months, as well as the national adaptation materials for the Armenian legal order.

The HELP course on Prohibition of Ill-treatment was developed in 2017 and it covers the following topics:

1. Definitions and international/European legal framework

2. Conditions of detention and medical tretament of detainees

3. Use of force as a means of restraint

4. Safeguards against ill-treatment

5. Effective investigation – combatting impunity

6. Interrelation with other rights (Articles 1, 6 and 13 of the ECHR)

The HELP online platform is available in English and Romanian. Following the completion of this pilot tutored course, the Armenian version will also be transferred and available to public.

The course was launched and will be implemented within the project Supporting the criminal justice reform and combating ill-treatment and impunity in Armenia under the European Union and Council of Europe framework Partnership for Good Governance, and in cooperation with the Academy of Justice of Armenia.