Nikol Pashinyan: “I expect the Prosecutor’s Office to abide by a principled position in protecting the State’s interests”
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan attended a ceremonious event dedicated to the 100th Anniversary of the Office of Prosecutor General (OPG) of the Republic of Armenia and the Day of Staff of Prosecutor’s Office.
Congratulating all active and former employees of the Prosecutor’s Office on their professional holiday, the Prime Minister stated in part, “No one can deny that throughout its existence, the Prosecutor’s Office has played a key role in combating crime. One can imagine what happened in our homeland 100 years ago, when the Prosecutor’s Office was established in Armenia, when there were dozens, if not hundreds of criminal groups that engaged in various criminal activities in our country, mainly banditry. But I feel that on this festive day, we should also make some accents in connection with the Centenary of the activities of the Office of Prosecutor General.
On holidays, it is a common practice to talk about achievements, impeccable service, and the Attorney-General rightfully said about this in his speech. But I want to emphasize today that during the centenary-long activities of the Office of Prosecutor General there have been very complex and contradictory periods: from the well-known events of the 1930s, which remained in the history and consciousness of people as the Year 37, continuing the persecution of the fighters for the independence of the Republic of Armenia, which also occurred in the Soviet years.
Unfortunately, after the restoration of independence, the annals of the activities of the Prosecutor’s Office were not always filled with a festive lexicon and a festive mood. Of course, there were controversial, obviously wrong, obviously unacceptable, obviously illegal steps, decisions in domestic political conflicts and internal political struggle, and we all know about it. But I do not talk about it to spoil our holiday, your holiday. I mention this to emphasize my conviction and the obvious truth that a new chapter has opened up for all State bodies, including the Prosecutor’s Office, which is an excellent opportunity for both the Republic of Armenia and the citizens of the Republic of Armenia, for the law-enforcement authorities, all public agencies, and the Prosecutor’s Office.
The most important principle of this new page is the following: offenders must be held accountable in this new Armenia; responsibility must be proportionate, legal and fair, the innocent should not be subjected to any harassment, victims’ rights should be protected, the rights of all parties to the trial should be respected, even the rights of prisoners and accused should be fully protected, and this is one of the most important functions of the Office of Prosecutor General.
I think it is obvious to all of us that the most important requirement of the citizens of the Republic of Armenia is the demand for justice, and it would be hard to overestimate the role of the Office of Prosecutor General in fulfilling the people demand for justice. In fact, the Prosecutor’s Office is a cornerstone on the road to justice, and it is important that the traffic light function properly at this intersection in accordance with the law and logic.
Thus, the most important task of the Office of Prosecutor General in the new Armenia is to safeguard the rule of law in the sense that it should not take into account who is the object of justice - a representative of government, opposition, acting or former public official. This attitude should have nothing to do with any conjuncture, with any political overtone. The most important function in the new Armenia is the fight against corruption, in which law enforcement agencies, under the supervision of the Prosecutor’s Office, should show a principled approach. It should not matter who the corrupt official is - an acting official, a former official or some other entity.
All citizens are equal before the law In the Republic of Armenia, and the Office of Prosecutor General is one of the most important bodies, if not the most important, to enforce this principle. Another most important function is the protection of State interests, and I expect the Prosecutor’s Office to abide by a principled position in protecting the State’s interests.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Active and former employees of the Prosecutor's Office, I wish to reiterate my congratulations on the 100th Anniversary of the Office of Prosecutor General of the Republic of Armenia and the Day of the Staff of Prosecutor’s Office. I would like to express the hope that year after year from now on more and more citizens of Armenia will consider this day as their own holiday, and more and more citizens will send you sincere congratulations, good wishes and words of gratitude.
Therefore, long live freedom!
Long live the Republic of Armenia!
Long live our children and we, since we live and will live in a free, law-governed and happy Armenia!”