Who cannot be named
Armenia marks a woeful anniversary: 16 years have passed since the terrorist attack in the Parliament, that actually beheaded the government of that time – the Prime Minister, Parliament Speaker, two Vice-Speakers, three MPs and the Minister for Operative Issues, were killed.
Despite all investigations, Armenia still cannot answer its citizens, who is standing behind those murders. The incumbent Parliament Speaker, Galust Sahakyan, made a statement, saying he believed “the crime will be solved by all means. ‘It is a legal problem and we will once find a solution to it, said Sahakyan.
However, this statement can be taken as a kind of diplomatic trick: the speaker could not publicly admit that this problem is not actually legal but rather political, could he?! Neither could the investigation be unaware, what forces were standing behind the terrorist attack. That could not be simply said loud.
Only those 7 individuals, who directly committed that crime, were charged –including 5 of them, who had burst into the Parliament session hall and opened machine-gun fire. All seven individuals were found guilty of high treason and terrorism. Six persons were sentenced to life imprisonment, one – to 14 years in prison.
Three of the accused persons died at different times in prison. One of them committed a suicide in prison cell, another one was killed in cell by electric shock. The third one simply died “unexpectedly’. A member of Parliament was also accused of involvement in the terrorist attack; he was stripped of MP immunity and arrested, but he was then released because his guilt could not be proved. And soon he also died in a car accident.
Terrorists’ leader, Nairi Hunanyan, claimed, no one stood behind the gang and their main target was Armenian Prime Minister, Vazgen Sargsyan, whom they considered to be the ‘major evil’. By eliminating him they would have allegedly provided the people of Armenian with a chance for a better lot.
However, fewer people in Armenia believe that the attack was planned and carried out just by a group of fanatics. There are different versions, but the public, in general, tends to think that it was ordered from abroad: some suggest looking for a trace in Russian, others – in the USA.
Ashot Manucharyan, a politician and a friend of assassinated Prime Minister, Vazgen Sargsyan, has again recalled in his interview these days the version, that he put forward as early as in 2000.
‘I have the evidence that 3 days before the crime, a representative of one country told one of the Armenian public officials about the planned crime. For the investigation purposes, I requested setting up an ad hoc parliamentary commission, that could be trusted, but it hasn’t been set up yet. Perhaps, relevant authorities in Armenia and the forces beyond Armenia are not interested in solving the case and, therefore, they have not allowed setting up the exposure mechanism. But if we ask the country, that knows so much, maybe it will tell, who stood behind all that and why we had been warned in advance.