Treatment of those refusing to join the Communist party; forced resignations from their places of employment; treatment of family members (1990-2002) [AMN39290.E]

Although forced resignations are reported in Armenia (HRW 3 Feb. 1998; YPC Jan. 1998; RFE/RL 6 May 2001), the Research Directorate was unable to find reports of individuals who were pressured to resign from their positions of employment as a result of their refusal to join one of the Communist parties within the time period specified in the Information Request.

According to a 2000 list of Armenian political parties, there are three parties representing the Communist ideology in Armenia. The Communist Party of Armenia (Hayastani Komunistakan Kusaktsutyun, HKK), which has a membership of 53,000 and was represented by seven deputies in the National Parliament 1995-1999 ( 11 Sept. 2000). The United Progressive Communist Party of Armenia (Hayastani Arajadimakan Miatsial Komunistakan Kusaktsutiun, HAMKK) has a membership of 3,000 and it elected one deputy between 1995-1999 (ibid.). The third party, Women of the Armenian Land (Anayk Hayots Ashkhari, AHA) claims 375 members, but elected no deputies in the 1995-1999 Parliament.

With respect to degree of political power held in Armenia, in the 1999 parliamentary election, HKK received 11 seats, none of the HAMKK, AHA or the bloc called the Union of Communist and Socialist Parties (UCSP) received a seat ( 12 Mar. 2002). The OSCE Final Report on the 1999 election reported that the HKK had 50,337 valid registration signatures, while the UCSP received 52,059 (30 July 1999). By comparison, the Unity Bloc, elected to 29 parliamentary seats in the 1999 election ( 12 Mar. 2002), received 464,560 registration signatures (OSCE 30 July 1999).

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.

References 12 March 2002. "Elections in Armenia." [Accessed 23 Aug. 2002] 11 September 2000. "Political Parties of Armenia." [Accessed 23 Aug. 2002]

Human Rights Watch (HRW). 3 February 1998. "Militia Group That Forces Resignation of Armenian President Has Record of Human Rights Abuses." [Accessed 28 Aug. 2002]

Organization of Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE)/Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR). 30 July 1999. Republic of Armnia Parliamentary Election 30 May 1999: Final Report. [Accessed 23 Aug. 2002]

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL). 6 May 2001. Caucasian Report Vol. 4, No. 17. "Armenia Parliament Gunmen Again Says He Acted Alone." [Accessed 28 Aug. 2002]

Yerevan Press Club (YPC). January 1998. "When the Press is in Disregard." [Accessed 28 Aug. 2002]

Additional Sources Consulted

IRB Databases

Keesing's Record of World Events


Unsuccessful attempt to contact the Helsinki Association of Armenia

Internet sites including:

Amnesty International

Armenia This Week (Armenian Assembly of America)

Armenia Week

Asbarez (Armenian Daily Newspaper)

Berkeley Program in Soviet and Post-Soviet Studies Working Papers Series

British Helsinki Human Rights Group

Hellenic Resources Network

Human Rights Watch

International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty

Armenia Report

World News Connection