The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) will deliver an advisory opinion (No. P16-2019-001) in writing on 29 May 2020 at 11 a.m., in response to a request from the Constitutional Court of Armenia, it said in a press release.
The case concerns the interpretation of a provision in the Criminal Code of Armenia of 2009 on the overthrow of the constitutional order and its application in the light of Article 7 (no punishment without law) of the European Convention on Human Rights in the context of a case against former President Robert Kocharyan.
Kocharyan has been charged under Article 300.1 of the 2009 Criminal Code (entitled “Overthrow of the Constitutional order”) with offences which were alleged to have been committed in relation to events which took place in February and March 2008, when protests broke out over a disputed presidential election, ECHR said. At that time, a different provision of the former Criminal Code, Article 300 (“usurpation of power”), was in force, it added.
A request from Armenia’s highest court for an advisory opinion, the second since the entry into force of Protocol No. 16 to the European Convention on Human Rights on 1 August 2018, was introduced on 2 September 2019.
It was accepted by the Panel of the Grand Chamber on 2 October and a Grand Chamber was formed on 7 October in accordance with Rule 24 § 2 (h) of the Rules of Court.
Earlier on 18 July, the Constitutional Court said it was seeking advice from the European court and the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe over the case on determining the compliance of Article 300.1 of the Criminal Code, which penalizes the overthrowing of the constitutional order, with the Constitution of Armenia.