Ex Military Prosecutor Says was Forced to Resign

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–Armenia’s former military prosecutor Gevork Markarian told a news conference Thursday that his 1997 resignation resulted from pressures from the president and his staff–who summoned him to a meeting and called for his resignation.

Markarian called the press conference to rebut claims by parents of soldiers who had died in service–alleging the former prosecutor was instrumental in sanctioning deaths in the army.

Markarian explained that in 1997 he compiled a report for Armenia’s prosecutor general detailing the number of legal violations at prosecutor’s office and called for a meeting of the prosecutors college. Two days following the report–Markarian was called to the presidential office and–in the presence of the president [Levon Ter-Petrosyan]–he was asked to submit his resignation.

Markarian said that he complied with the request and immediately submitted his resignation–claiming that since the president had appointed him–he could–very well–dismiss him.

The former prosecutor alleged that one of the obstacles in solving the December murder of former deputy defense minister Vahram Khorkhorouni was the deputy prosecutor general and the current military prosecutor Gagik Jhangirian. Markarian asserted that the prosecutor’s office also faced pressures from various other high-level officials–whose names he refused to publicize.

Markarian urged the prosecutor general’s office to tighten its grip and rid the office of possible corrupt and criminal elemen’s who have been wreaking havoc on the nation.

He also alleged that evidence from the Khorkhorouni murder site had vanished.

Markarian said that the parents of soldiers who perished in service should not blame the defense minister–but rather others who had been placed in the military before him.

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