Freedom of Information Center of Armenia.

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Success Story 20


Director of the Yerevan Building Investment Program Implementation Unit SNCO Ruben Harutyunyan was held liable by the decision of December 24, 2013 of the RA Administrative Court for violating the right to freedom of information. This is the third similar precedent when an official is imposed a fine in amount of 50,000 AMD for violating the freedom of information right.

Back in 2009, FOICA had sent a written request to the SNCO asking to provide information on SNCO’s funding from the state budget as well as on the agreements signed. The SNCO had rejected to provide this information citing the law “On State Budget” as to the funding from the state budget, while in case of agreements, the SNCO had stated that the information was not subject to be provided since it contained commercial secret. FOICA had challenged SNCO’s refusal. From the very beginning the case was divided into 2 separate cases, one on recognizing SNCO’s actions non-legitimate and obliging SNCO to provide the requested information and the other – on requiring to subject the SNCO Director to administrative liability.

The case on subjecting the SNCO Director to administrative liability was suspended on June 16, 2009 until the case on recognizing the SNCO’s actions non legitimate was over. This case, passing through all judicial instances, ended up with FOICA’s win on January 18, 2012. The suspended case on holding the SNCO Director liable restarted on March 12, 2013. On December 24, 2013 the RA Administrative Court judged on this case, upholding FOICA’s lawsuit and subjecting SNCO Director Ruben Harutyunyan to administrative liability.

Note that the first similar case, when an official was fined 50,000 AMD, was FOICA vs. Yelpin village mayor’s office in 2009; and in the second case, the information holder being subjected to administrative liability in 2013 was not a state agency but a private organization of public significance, Dustr Marianna LLC.

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