Monday, 29 June 2009

Re: Zaruhi Postanjyan

I’ve been following this tragicomedy involving nationalist and pro-government circles on the one side and Armenian MP Zaruhi Postanjyan, prominent human rights lawyer from the opposition Heritage party, on the other side, and could not help myself but wonder. How much we love targeting people instead of targeting problems?!

Nationalist and pro-government propaganda machine can’t get enough of condemning Zaruhi’s ‘treacherous’ behaviour. Here she is, an ‘enemy of people’, ‘enemy of Armenia’. How did she dare asking for Azeri and Turkish signatures under the statement condemning the state of human rights in Armenia and demanding the release of all political prisoners. Ironically, the same circles were pretty jubilant with Zaruhi Postanjyan’s stance re Karabakh and Turkey which is leaning towards more nationalist spectrum of the political field in Armenia. Ironically, among those still detained are Karabakh war veterans, and Turkish and Azeri MPs signed under the demand of their release too (!), which caused some ‘reaction’ back in Baku.

My only problem with those signatures not the fact that they came from Azeri and Turkish MPs, but I believe that only a person who recognises and criticises similar and (much) worse human rights abuses in his/her own country has the right to criticise others. I am not sure that this is the case re e.g. that MP from Azerbaijan.

Other than that, critics of Zaruhi Postanjyan are missing the point. If they think it’s shameful that the name “Armenia” is being used in Europe in relation to poor human rights record or being monitored by the Council of Europe, they should fight the roots of the problem, not the person who highlights it, whether with the ‘right’ or the ‘wrong’ signatures.


Ani said...

Guess it's time to roll out my mantra again: --What and why, not who. Until the focus can be put on the goals, the reasons, and the desired results, instead of on "who" is saying what or initiating which, nobody in the region is going to get anywhere. Unless of course you've got a vested interest in going nowhere, but even vested interests can go up in smoke unexpectedly. Really, what's shameful is to have so many documented human rights violations and to have political prisoners at all, no matter where and no matter whether they are war heroes or passersby. And far, far too many things are being swept under the carpet, whether it's Armenian, Azeri, Turkish, or Persian.

Gevorgyan said...

It is a great pity and I agree with you.

artmika said...

ArmeniaNow: In Defense of a Hero of Armenia: Step back before stepping up to crucify Postanjyan