23 August 2016, 23:59
Experts fear strengthening of anti-Russian sentiment in Armenia in case of Valery Permyakov's extradition
The decision on life imprisonment for soldier Valery Permyakov, sentenced for the murder of a family in Gyumri, will not affect the negative attitude of the Armenian society towards Russia. This opinion was voiced by the experts interviewed by the "Caucasian Knot". They believe that the tension will intensify in case if Valery Permyakov is sent to serve his sentence at home.
The Armenian society is keenly aware that not only Valery Permyakov is to be blamed for the tragedy: too many questions still to be raised against the leaders of the 102nd Russian military base. This was noted by human rights defender Arthur Sakunts, the leader of the Vanadzor Office of the Helsinki Citizens' Assembly.
In particular, some circumstances still remain unclear, including why Valery Permyakov was enlisted to the army, why he decided to leave his combat post and why his escape was revealed too late.
According to Arthur Sakunts, even the Valery Permyakov's life sentence does not change the extremely negative attitude of residents of Armenia against the Russian military base; moreover, soldiers did not stop leaving the military base without official permission even during the period of investigation.
Arthur Sakunts believes that the situation could change if the legal assessment were pronounced not only against the Valery Permyakov's actions, but also against the actions of the Russian commanders and Armenian law enforcers.
According to political analyst Ruben Megrabyan, an expert of the Armenian Centre for Political and International Studies, Russia aggravates the negative attitude to itself by politicizing the issue of selection of the place where Valery Permyakov will serve his sentence and by acting under the principle of "non-surrendering compatriots."
The extradition of Valery Permyakov to Russia will comply with the spirit of international conventions; however, the Armenian society may not understand such a decision, believes human rights defender Larisa Alaverdyan, the first Ombudsman of Armenia.
Full text of the article is available on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’.
Author: Armine Martirosyan; Source: CK correspondent