June 18, 2020 / 2:27 PM / 23 days ago

Armenia releases former president Kocharyan on $4 million bail

FILE PHOTO: Armenia's President Robert Kocharyan speaks to the media after casting his ballot at a polling station in Yerevan February 19, 2008. REUTERS/David Mdzinarishvili

YEREVAN (Reuters) - Armenia’s criminal court of appeal released former president Robert Kocharyan from custody on Thursday on bail of 2 billion drams ($4.2 million).

Kocharyan, who served as president for a decade, was charged with acting unlawfully in 2018 over his decision to introduce a state of emergency in March 2008 following a disputed election. At least 10 people were killed in clashes between the police and protesters.

Kocharyan’s lawyer Aram Vardevanian described the amount of the bail as “unprecedented”, but said it was good the court had accepted the bail money.

Reporting by Nvard Hovhannisyan; Editing by Alexander Marrow and Gareth Jones

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