September 7, 2016
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of China (Taiwan) strongly protests the Armenian government’s decision to deport 78 ROC nationals suspected of telecommunications fraud to mainland China without notifying the ROC government and while disregarding the wishes of the ROC nationals concerned. MOFA also demands that the Armenian government provide a clear explanation of its actions.
When ROC authorities learned on August 26 that the Armenian police had seized the passports and communications equipment of the ROC nationals concerned and had restricted their freedom, Taiwan’s representative office in Russia immediately contacted related Armenian agencies, as well as lawyers representing the ROC nationals, to gain a better understanding of the situation. In addition, Taiwan’s representative to Russia, Mr. Wang Chien Yeh, personally traveled to Armenia accompanied by other diplomats from the representative office in Moscow. However, not only did the Armenian authorities not issue visas to the ROC diplomats, denying them entry at the airport, the authorities also hid the whereabouts of the detained ROC nationals from their lawyers, making it impossible for the ROC government to locate its nationals and safeguard their judicial rights.
The Armenian government neither released information concerning the case during the investigation nor disclosed the location of the ROC nationals. Therefore, the whole investigation was not conducted according to proper legal procedures, severely violating the human rights of the suspects and the principles and precedents of international law. MOFA expresses deep regret over the actions taken by the Armenian government, and intends to notify international human rights organizations, through appropriate channels, about the aforementioned violations by Armenia. (E)