Below is the email that is going around to help those who were unlawfully detained on March 1 on political grounds. Please take part and help spread the word.
Dear Sir or Madam
Officially eight civilians were killed, many detained, and more missing
during Armenia's Bloody Saturday. One of those citizens was Ashot Manukyan from the northern city of Vanadzor. He and others are currently being illegally detained and denied habeas corpus.
Ashot has spent his life selflessly fighting corruption and human rights violations. In the 1980s Soviet Union he helped successfully organize the closing of a chemical factory that produced smog that ate the nylons off of women's legs. After the 1988 earthquake he organized the donations that flowed in from around the world and housed over 100 international volunteers. His daughter, a small girl at the time, jokes now that she wasn't allowed to have any of the donations because they were for earthquake victims – her reply then: "But aren't we earthquake victims?" During Armenia's fight for independence, Ashot again was key in leading the residents of his city to the capital to meet the other of hundreds of thousands peaceful protesters. Once the Soviet collapsed and economic troubles left the country without heat or light for almost three years, Ashot (the deputy mayor of his city) and his family refused to steal electricity or help deforest the mountains around the town. Covered in blankets, by candlelight they huddled and read literature and Greek mythology to one another.
Whatever the opinion might be of the opposition's political heads or their motives, the world can't let a peaceful citizen like Ashot Manukyan be abducted, beaten and illegally detained by illegitimate thugs. He embodies what is best for Armenia and for democracy around the world. He is not alone. Please don't let him and the other political prisoners of Armenia be forgotten.
Demand the Armenian authorities cease this violation of basic human rights and release these citizens!
Sign your name here.
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