#202, 2002-11-06 | #203, 2002-11-07 | #204, 2002-11-08


A local court in Yerevan started hearing a case that involves a former head of Turkish division at the foreign ministry and a former interpreter for ex-and current Armenian presidents, Murad Bojolian, October 24. Bojolian is standing trial on charges of spying for Turkey. Three court session were held, five witnesses were questioned and Bojolian is expected to be over with giving testimony at the next session. Six Armenian dailies, one TV channel Shant and RFE/RL report from the courthouse. But it is hard to say why other TV channels avoid reporting on an unprecedented case. However, we would like to recall another court hearing that involved former education minister Ashot Bleyan, when virtually all channels did not miss any court session. Bleyan was accused of public funds embezzlement, but not of spying.

We are far from pretending that the daily Azg reports on the case more professionally than other local newspapers, but the word is about opposite approaches, taken up by papers in presenting the case to the public. If a reader goes through a report by the weekly Yerkir, run by the Dasnaktsutyun party and then a report by pro-opposition Haykakan Zhamanak on the same case, he will break his head in a bid to make out what was happening in the court room that same day. Though the court is still far from issuing its final verdict, but the man standing trial, was described by one paper as "a Turkish spy," and by another as "an innocent man."

Journalists covering this case can have their own opinion, which should not be imposed on readers. When we complain of low print run we should also realize that it is the fault of journalists who are not any longer trusted or believed.

By T.H.

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