Keywords: Ombuds Institution
Armenia ratified the OPCAT in September 2006. This occurred after national round-tables on the OPCAT were co-organised by the Armenian NGO, Civil Society Institute (CSI) and Penal Reform International’s (PRI) Tbilisi Regional Office in order to promote the ratification of the OPCAT in Armenia. The OPCAT promotion was particularly successful and the inclusive discussion between the Armenian authorities and civil society was recognised as a key element of that success.
Armenia designated its Ombuds Institution (Human Rights Defender's Office) in 2008, through an amendment to the legislation establishing the Ombuds Institution.
Armenian civil society organisations called for their inclusion in the NPM itself. The involvement of civil society was formalized in 2010, with the establishment of an Expert Council on the Prevention of Torture at the initiative of the Ombudsperson to support the NPM work. It comprises representatives from civil society organisations and independent experts.
The Armenian NPM started its operations shortly after designation. In 2011, a new department was established within the Ombuds Institution to carry out the NPM functions.
After the new Constitution of the Republic of Armenia was adopted in December 2015, a constitutional law on the Human Rights Defender was drafted, also clarifying the mandate of the Ombuds Institution as NPM. The new Constitutional Law on the Human Rights Defender entered into force in March 2017.
The SPT conducted an NPM advisory visit to Armenia in September 2013. The SPT reports to the State and to the NPM have been made public, as well as the replies from the State and the NPM.
The SPT member who is the SPT Focal Point for Armenia is available here.