Why does the legal journalist “fiercely hate” the National Assembly?

Legal journalist of the “Yerkir.am” site Astghik Karapetyan, as she says, appeared in the media sphere quite accidentally, but liked it and marked the importance of this specialisation. Interview with Astghik was not accidental, we held it in the court where after the interview the journalist had to cover another court sitting. As Astghik states, her professional life`s groomy days start and end with National Assembly. Let`s understand details on this and why Astghik does not want her daughter become a journalist in the regular interview of the “Journalists covering legal sphere” by Iravaban.net.

Hello Astghik, let`s speak about your education.

I have got a Bachelor`s degree at YSU in 2007, and Master`s degree in 2009. I have been working while studying, since 2004 I have been a correspondent with “Yerkir” official newspaper, and in 2007 I have registered as a staff member.

Why did you chose the profession of journalist?

Quite accidentally, I have chosen it without understanding what journalism is. Honestly. I was studying at the Seminary after Anania Shirakatsi, mainly in the natural sciences sphere. So, it was supposed that I would not think about journalism, I was thinking of becoming a military doctor. When I was to apply, I was studying to enter the Military-Medical University, but my father learned that they didn`t accept girls that year. So I became indifferent what profession to choose, starting from theatrical direction to chemics. And based on my elder sister`s suggestion I entered the faculty of Journalism of YSU.

Did you put the dream of military doctor aside, or you gave up on that?

No, I have given up that profession when entered the university and started to study, I understood that I really liked my profession. And whenever I get an offer from another field, to partially leave journallism, I already have panic.

How many years is that you cover legal sphere?

Already for 4 years.

What is the primary thing for a journalist covering the legal sphere?

As a journalist it is important to form the right way of communication, and then – the literate comprehension. I don`t want to label my colleagues, but there are cases that people do not comprehend the issue clearly and thus do not disseminate the right information. I am not a lawyer, I don`t feel ashamed to ask questions to the advocates, prosecutors and other experts in the field, when I understand there`s a lack. When I was writing the article, I was consulting with several people. You won`t have to be ashamed, this knowledge is quite important.

The activities of a journalist covering legal field starts at the National Assembly and ends in the courts, what are the problems here?

During quite a short period in my life I was accredited with the National Assembly, and honestly that was hellish for me, as I really did not like going to the National Assembly. It seems that the legal journalist shall be interested in the legislative body, but I won`t say news that mainly journalists covering political field are going to the National Assembly.

You`re right, the legislative is not perceived as such anymore. 

Yes, if you have to get acquainted with the laws before entering into force or afterwards, it is done outside the National Assembly. But I haven`t had any difficulties in the NA activities.

And what are the problems in communication with the judicial system?

As such there haven`t been any problems, But I don`t like it much when you request to record them and get rejected. The judge goes to that step not by hearing to the parties but based just on its own will. It manly happens in the Court of Appeals.

I see a ring on your finger, are you married?

Yes, I am married and I have a daughter.

Would you like your daughter to follow your path?

No, I believe she will exceed me in all the aspects, I have never aspired to get high positions, I would like my daughter to do what I haven`t done, but not in journalism. I would like her to get professional in the legal sphere.

What are the topical legal problems to be daily covered today, according to you?

I think that every day we cover those topics that we find proper, we feel what`s important. We cover not the wrong legislation, but the incomplete one, which becomes a reason for human rights infringements.

What investigations have you been working on?

As such I didn`t have any investigations to work on. But there are articles that I have been working deeply on, I have found many interesting details.

Did you ever have interesting, surprising or funny cases during investigations?

There have been such cases. For example when I took a maternity leave, somebody called the editorial office and asked me, and when he was answered that I was on a maternity leave, he said “What kind of maternity leave? Tell her that our case is already i the Court of appeals”.

Astghik has been the Yerkir newspaper and Yerkir.am journalist responsible for social-legal issues since 2007, got many awards and first places in competitions.

Interview made by Gevorg Tosunyan

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