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Hayk Mkrtchyan

Hayk Mkrtchyan

HRD, program coordinator

Hayk Mkrtchyan is a human rights defender working in the area of the rights of people with disabilities, elderly persons and children for over 10 years. Hayk is the program coordinator of the Human Rights Department of the “Ekho” Disability Rights NGO and interpreter in the international programs of “Ekho” NGO. He coordinates the Committee of Community Empowerment of the largest coalition in Armenia called Coalition of Inclusive Legal Reforms. In addition, he is an independent member of the Public Council attached to the RA Human Rights Defender. Moreover, he is independent member of the Monitoring group of Care Houses in Armenia as a human rights expert for children and the elderly. Within the framework of its international activities, he regularly develops alternative reports concerning the situation of the rights of the persons with disabilities, elderly persons and children various specialized bodies of the United Nations.


Defamation campaigns carried out by the state media and public officials are often used to stigmatise HRDs and discredit their work in Armenia. These campaigns tend to portray HRDs as foreign agents and spies and can result in increased threats, judicial harassment and onerous tax inspections of their organisations. A major cause for concern is the treatment of LGBTI rights defenders, who are often faced with physical attacks and verbal abuse, both from state officials and the general public. Women’s rights defenders are regularly threatened and are frequently criticised for their work by the media, public opinion in general, and their family members. Additionally, some HRDs working in remote areas face judicial harassment and threats from local law enforcement agencies.