Petrosyan v. Azerbaijan (Application no. 32427/16)

A selection of key paragraphs can be found below the judgement.


57. Having regard to the above, and drawing inferences from the failure to provide more detailed information, including photographs of the body, the Court finds that the explanation given by the respondent Government regarding the number and type of the injuries suffered by the applicant’s son before his death and regarding the cause of his death is not supported by sufficiently convincing elements.

58. The Court finds, therefore, that the Government have not convincingly accounted for the circumstances of the death of Karen Petrosyan and that the respondent State’s responsibility for his death is engaged. It follows that there has been a violation of Article 2 in its substantive limb.

60. Given the information that may be inferred from the medical reports (see, in particular, paragraphs 52-56 above), the Court finds that it cannot be called into question that an investigation should have been carried out. Moreover, the Court takes into account that, according to the respondent Government, Karen Petrosyan was an Armenian citizen who was detained on the ground that he was a member of an armed “subversive” group (see paragraph 23 above). In this connection, the Court cannot overlook the general context of hostility and tension between Azerbaijan and Armenia (see, for example, Saribekyan and Balyan, cited above, §§ 39-40). In the Court’s view, these circumstances also indicated that an investigation should have been carried out by the authorities of the respondent State on their own motion, including as to whether ethnic hatred had played a role in the treatment of Karen Petrosyan (see, mutatis mutandisSaribekyan and Balyan, cited above, §§ 72 and 86).

61. For those reasons, the Court finds that there has a been a violation of Article 2 of the Convention also in its procedural limb.

70. The Court has found above that the respondent Government have not convincingly accounted for the circumstances of the death of Karen Petrosyan and the injuries that he sustained (see paragraphs 51-58). In that context it has taken note that the forensic reports submitted by both parties reported a large number of bodily injuries and that the statement in the report adduced by the respondent Government to the effect that the injuries had been inflicted “2-3 days before” death are difficult to reconcile with the videos of the applicant that were dispersed (see paragraph 54 above).

71. On the basis of the information available to it, it is not possible for the Court to establish exactly what happened to Karen Petrosyan while in detention. In the light of the injuries that were identified and the lack of plausible explanations as to how they had been inflicted on him, the Court finds however that it has been sufficiently proved that he was victim of severe physical violence prior to his death, to a degree that amounted to a violation of Article 3 of the Convention in respect of him.


De versie van de browser die je gebruikt is verouderd en wordt niet ondersteund.
Upgrade je browser om de website optimaal te gebruiken.