An American Intern’s Fight for Justice in Armenia

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Narine Esmaeili was intimidated by Armenian police and the subject of an interrogation after she tried to stop massive ballot stuffing in Artashat’s polling precinct (Photo Credit: Karen Minasyan/AFP/Getty Images)

Narine Esmaeili was intimidated by Armenian police and the subject of an interrogation after she tried to stop massive ballot stuffing in Artashat’s polling precinct (Photo Credit: Karen Minasyan/AFP/Getty Images)

A 21-year-old U.S. student was an observer in her ancestral homeland Armenia’s disputed February 18, 2013 Presidential election. When Narine Esmaeili, who interns for Transparency International, tried to prevent massive ballot stuffing in Artashat’s polling precinct 17-5, she was physically assaulted by the local mayor’s son and instructed to be a “good girl” – keep her mouth shut – by the police who responded to her phone call. The young woman did the opposite, videotaping a testimony and posting it on YouTube.

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