Wrongfully prosecuted: for 2 years, 8 months, 20 days
Arkadya Akopovich Akopyan was born in 1948 in a small Armenian village in Azerbaijan. His parents worked in a collective vineyard and raised four sons. Arkadya tried to enrol in a pedagogical institute but was not successful; however, eventually he began working in a tailor shop, fell in love with the art of tailoring, and even took distance learning courses in design from a Baku technical school.
In 1978 Arkadya married Sonya. Ten years later an outbreak of ethnic violence in Azerbaijan forced them and their three children to relocate to Kabardino-Balkaria. When he met Jehovah’s Witnesses in the early 1990s, Arkadya Akopovich was impressed by the depth of the Bible’s wisdom. He was also amazed that ethnic hostility was alien to followers of this religion.
His wife, Sonya, is not a baptised Jehovah’s Witness. Nevertheless, they have been happily married for about 40 years. When her husband became one of Jehovah’s Witnesses 25 years ago, he never forced her or the children to change their religion. This does not harmonise with the accusations of “extremism” made against Mr Akopyan. His family and neighbours, who represent different nationalities, cultures and religions, respect Arkadya and know him to be a kind and sympathetic person.
Семейное положение: женат. Имеет 3 детей, 6 внуков, 3 родных братьев.
На фотографии (слева направо): внучка Алина, Аркадя Акопян, его жена Соня, внучка Оксана, дочь Лиана, зять Александр, внучка Диана.