GYUMRI, Armenia (Arka)—Armenia’s Investigative Committee has released video footage of the interrogation of Russian military serviceman Valery Permyakov, who has plead guilty to the murder of a family of seven in Gyumri, the press office of the committee reported.
The interrogation by Armenian law enforcement authorities took place in the presence of a defense attorney and an interpreter, according to the report. It was recorded as required by law. The faces of the interpreter and the attorney in the video are hidden for security purposes.
The report says Armenian investigators took samples from Permyakov for forensic examinations, such as DNA tests.
For an ostensibly more effective investigation into the murder case, the heads of Armenia’s and Russia’s investigative committees, Aghvan Hovsepyan and Alexandr Bastrikin, signed an agreement earlier to set up a coordination office comprising of ten representatives from each country.
All investigative measures will be taken in line with international law and as per the military base agreement between Armenia and Russia, according to officials.
The Russian side has charged Permyakov with murdering two or more people and deserting his military post with a firearm.
Criminal charges were also brought against Permyakov in accordance to Armenia’s criminal code.
Ex-President Kocharian Criticizes Officials
“The Gyumri crime which shook Armenia is striking in its brutality,” Former President of Armenia Robert Kocharian said in an interview with 2rd.am.
“It was obvious that the people’s indignation could grow into large-scale protests with unpredictable outcomes. The authorities should have taken measures to prevent them,” Kocharyan said. “And first of all, they should have unequivocally ensured the investigation of the crime by Armenian law enforcement agencies and the trial of the accused by Armenian courts — we already had a precedent of such a decision in 1999,” Kocharian continued.
“I am convinced that both the Armenian and Russian sides would have benefited from such measures, as it would have prevented any attempt to extrapolate this tragic case to be about Armenia-Russia relations in general.
“Blurred, contradictory and confused statements from our officials only poured oil on the flames, adding a flavor of national humiliation to the escalated situation. And this is already a highly explosive combination and unfortunately, people’s anger was poured on Armenian policemen.
“In any event, it was a horrifying tragedy. My family and I are deeply shocked by what happened and are mourning together with everyone”, Kocharyan said.