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Jailed Former Armenian President Kocharian Hospitalized

Former President Robert Kocharian (center) in court in Yerevan in September
Former President Robert Kocharian (center) in court in Yerevan in September

YEREVAN -- Armenia’s former President Robert Kocharian, who is currently in pretrial detention, has been hospitalized to undergo medical examinations, according to his lawyer and one of his aides.

Lawyer Hovannes Khudoyan told RFE/RL that Kocharian “will probably need to stay in hospital for several days,” without saying what medical condition he has.

However, the head of Kocharian’s office, Viktor Soghomonian, said that the 65-year-old former president was taken to a hospital late on March 8 with fluctuating blood pressure.

Kocharian, who ruled Armenia from 1998 to 2008, is currently on trial on charges stemming from his alleged role in a 2008 postelection crackdown on the opposition, as well as for taking bribes.

He rejects the charges as politically motivated.

Since his arrest in July 2018, Kocharian has twice been released from pretrial detention following court decisions, but in both cases he was rearrested after prosecutors’ appeals.

In October, Kocharian underwent what medics described as a successful surgery. His son Levon has said he was operated on for a benign tumor, without giving further details.

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