YEREVAN (Armenpress)–President Robert Kocharian addressed a message to the nation in connection with the first anniversary of last year’s October 27 tragic events in the Armenian parliament. His statement reads as follows:
"Dear compatriots–a year ago–on October 27–a horrible crime was committed at the National assembly that claimed the lives of parliament speaker Karen Demirchian–prime minister Vazgen Sarkisian–parliament members Yuri Bakhshian–Ruben Miroyan–Henrik Abrahamian–Armenak Armenakian–Mikael Kotanian and government member Leonard Petrosian.
That was a blow not only on the people but also on our statehood. The country’s stability–its international image and the constitutional order have gone through a severe ordeal.
But despite it–the joint efforts of the state structures and the society helped our young state to overcome that hard experience and return the country’s viability to a natural channel. That crime is and will be condemned by all layers of our society. Today when we mark the first anniversary of our colleagues’ death–it is our duty to realize that the best way to commemorate them is to uphold the cause initiated by them and make their dreams come true in the name of prosperous Armenia."
The day of remembrance of the state officials assassinated on October 27–1999 began by visiting the Yerevan State Pantheon where Leonard Petrossian–Yuri Bakhshian–Mikael Kotanian and Ruben Miroyan are buried. Then–the procession headed for Yerablur where the grave of Vazgen Sargssian is situated.
Among those who came to render homage to the memory of the assassinated prime minister were President Robert Kocharian–Prime Minister Andranik Margarian–Parliament Speaker Armen Khachatrian–government officials–parliament members–representatives of the diplomatic corps–as well as numerous public representatives and representatives of the country’s intellectuals. A ceremony of remembrance of the dead was held at the gravesite of Vazgen Sargssian by His Holiness Karekin II–the Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenia’s–but no one came up to the microphone and no speeches were made.
President of the National Academy of Sciences of Armenia Fadei Sargssian–poetess and academician of the National Academy of Sciences Silva Kaputian–former secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Armenia–historian Karlen Dallakian and others made speeches at the grave of Karen Demirchian. Still long after the end of the ceremony–crowds of people came to the grave to pay tribute to the statesman.
In the evening–a meeting dedicated to the memory of the statesmen was held at the National Opera & Ballet Theater.