Three counterarguments questioning Prosecutor-General’s letter

The Union of Informed Citizens has issued a statement saying the Prosecutor’s Office of Armenia refuses to provide them a copy of the letter Armenian Prosecutor-General sent to his Russian counterpart, asking Russia to extradite a Russian soldier accused of murdering seven members of an Armenian family in Gyumri.

“On February 19, the Prosecutor’s Office issued a statement saying that the publications questioning the Armenian Prosecutor General’s letter to his Russian counterpart are ‘absurd.’

In the letter, Prosecutor-General Gevorg Kostanyan requested his Russian counterpart, Yury Chayka, to extradite the Russian soldier Valeri Permyakov who is accused of murdering the seven-member Avetisyan family in Gyumri, saying that the high-profile case should be transferred to Armenian jurisdiction.

  1. It is strange to hear that in the 21st century a letter sent on February 3 could not have reached the addressee [Russian Prosecutor-General] in several weeks. Even a messenger sent to Moscow from Yerevan on a horse would have got to the destination by now.
  2. According to the official report, in his letter Gevorg Kostanyan referred to a provision of the Armenian-Russian agreement which allows the refusal of the request. There is no reference to the previsions of the law which will oblige the Russian side to extraditethe Russian side.
  3. The Prosecutor’s Office of the Republic of Armenia has violated the RA Law on Freedom of Information by refusing to provide the copy of the letter to the Union of Informed Citizens and other media.

As long as the Prosecutor’s Office, in violation of the law, does not give a copy of the letter or produces any evidence proving that the letter has been sent to the Russian side, Armenians have the right to claim that the Prosecutor’s Office is concealing some details from the public, otherwise, they would reveal the content of the letter.

On February 13, the Union of Informed Citizens requested the Administrative Court to force the Prosecutor’s Office to give us a copy of the controversial letter. Let the public draw conclusions from the aforesaid absurdity,” reads the statement.

Permyakov has been kept under arrest at the Gyumri-based Russian military base ever since being arrested, for the murder of a seven-member family in Gyumri – Seryozha Avetisyan, his wife Hasmik, daughter Aida, son Armen, daughter-in-law Araksya, two-year-old granddaughter Hasmik and 6-month-old baby boy Seryozha, who died of his stab injuries a week later.

Kostanyan pledged to appeal to the chief Russian prosecutor when he was confronted by angry demonstrators in Gyumri on January 15. They were incensed by his earlier statement that the Armenian side is not seeking Permyakov’s handover because Russia’s constitution forbids the extradition of Russian citizens to foreign states.
Translation by

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