Robert Kocharyan. Photo: © Sputnik / Asatur Yesayants

02 February 2019, 12:49

Kocharyan tells about attempts to involve militaries in 2008 confrontation

In 2008, the opposition tried to involve military servicemen in the political confrontation. The second President of Armenia, Robert Kocharyan, has stated at the trial that he had stopped these attempts.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that Robert Kocharyan was arrested on July 27, 2018, on charges of financial crimes and overthrowing the constitutional order in connection with the crackdown of people's protests in Yerevan in March 2008. Then, the court overturned this decision with reference to the former president's immunity, but later, the court of appeal re-authorized Mr Kocharyan's arrest.

The session on the complaint against the extension of Kocharyan's arrest by two months continued at the Court of Appeal on February 1. Mr Kocharyan was present at the session and told about the situation that developed in February 2008, Ayk Alumyan, a Robert Kocharyan's advocate, told the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent.

According to the advocate, Robert Kocharyan said that in February 2008, authorities received information that militaries were campaigned to join demonstrators. Besides, Manvel Grigoryan, the head of the "Erkrapa" Volunteers' Union, tried to attract members of his organization to the side of the opposition.

"Robert Kocharyan instructed the Armenian Minister of Defence to ensure the neutrality of the army, so that the army did not interfere in this process," Mr Alumyan has noted, adding that Robert Kocharyan had set the condition for high-ranking military commanders – if they want to continue their service in the army, they should give up their participation in the activities of the "Erkrapa" Volunteers' Union, otherwise they should have resigned.

There is not a single person who would say that there was an order to the army to open fire at demonstrators. At the same time, investigators are not looking for those, involved in the death of 10 people in March 2008. No investigation to identify those responsible is underway. During the court session, Robert Kocharyan himself urged to first clarify all these circumstances, and then – to pass over to the prosecution, the advocate Ayk Alumyan has concluded.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on February 2, 2019 at 05:59 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Armine Martirosyan; Source: CK correspondent

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