YEREVAN, February 25. /ARKA/. The chairman of Armenia’s Constitutional Court Hrayr Tovmasyan has filed a lawsuit against Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, according to a statement posted on the official website of the Judicial Department.
Tovmasyan demands that the prime minister apologize for offensive statements and refute some information which he says is slander.
The lawsuit was accepted by a local court on February 21. The case will be considered by Judge Gayane Khachatryan.
On October 17, 2019, Armenia’s Special Investigation Service opened a criminal case against Tovmasyan on charges of power usurpation. The case is based on a statement addressed by an independent parliament member Arman Babajanyan to the Prosecutor General.
According to Babajanyan, Tovmasyan was elected as judge of the Constitutional Court in violation of the law. On November 19, it emerged that the Investigative Committee obtained data on the abuses committed by Hrayr Tovmasyan during his tenure as Minister of Justice from 2010 to 2015. He was elected as chairman f the Constitutional Court in the spring of 2018.
Earlier this month Armenia’s National Assembly, by a vote of 88 to 15, passed a bill approving a national referendum to amend the country’s constitution. The referendum seeks to modify Article 213 of the constitution and thus allow for the early termination of powers of Constitutional Court chairman Hrayr Tovmasyan and six other Court members.
Armenian President Armen Sarkisian signed a decree on February 9 setting April 5 as the date for the vote.
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan has accused the seven judges of the Court of maintaining ties to Armenia’s former leadership and impeding reforms aimed at creating an independent judiciary. -0-