Relatives of Murdered Gyumri Family Demand Killer’s Extradition to Armenia

Six-month-old Seryozha Avetisian is buried in Gyumri. Jan 21, 2015. (Photo: Photolure)

GYUMRI, Armenia (RFE/RL)—Relatives of a seven-member family that was massacred in Gyumri last month demand that the Russian soldier charged with the murders be handed over to Armenian authorities.

The legal successors of the victims of the shooting rampage that claimed the lives of Seryozha and Hasmik Avetisian, their adult son and daughter, daughter-in-law and two grandchildren, the youngest being only six months old, gathered near the provincial prosecutor’s office in Gyumri on Monday demanding answers to their questions, including from Armenia’s prosecutor-general.

After protests that took place in the northwestern Armenian city last month Prosecutor-General Gevorg Kostanian promised to ask his Russian counterpart to consider the transfer of Valery Permyakov, who is currently kept in custody at the Russian military base, to Armenian authorities. His office announced on February 3 that a letter to that effect had been sent to Russian Prosecutor-General Yuri Chayka.

A number of Armenian media since then have raised doubts that the request had, in fact, been submitted. They said they could not verify that through their inquiries submitted to Russian authorities. In a February 19 statement, the Armenian Prosecutor’s Office called such media allegations “absurd.”

Earlier, authorities in Moscow said that the soldier charged with the Gyumri killings would be tried by a Russian military court at the base.

Six weeks after the tragedy the relatives of the murdered family also seek answers to their question about the motives of the crime that still remain vague.

“We already held the memorial service on the 40th day after the family deaths, but we still know nothing,” one of them complained. “They don’t tell anything even to the legal successors [of the victims].”

Prosecutor of the Shirak province Raffi Aslanian referred the relatives of the murdered family to the Investigation Committee that conducts the joint investigation from the Armenian side. Dissatisfied with the kind of response, the legal successors of the Avetisians said they will initiate protests in Gyumri on Friday if before that the prosecutor-general does not come to the city and provide them with answers to all their questions.


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  1. Hratch said:

    Fait Accompli.

    There is more of a chance to bringing Tsar Putin to the Hague for the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 than for this demand to be fulfilled.

  2. Vindicated Man said:

    I don’t understand why he still isn’t extradited. The crime was committed outside of the base, so Russia’s justice system has nothing to do with this.

  3. zarkim said:

    Hrachya Harutyunyan an Armenian truck driver had an accident in Russia.
    Hrachya Harutiunian’s arrest caused controversy when he was made to appear in court wearing a women’s gown hours after his accident and arrest.
    CORRUPT Russian Legal system allowed this low act to take place.
    Valery Permyakov has killed Seven people in cold blood.
    They should force Valery Permyakov appear NUDE in YEREVAN streets?
    Valery Permyakov looks like PUTIN. May be related?
    Russians should get all of their SICK PERSONNEL out of Armenia. Valery Permyakov should be forced to appear in an Armenian Court wearing nothing.
    RUSSIA should compensate Armenia and Hrachya Harutyunyan for their BARBARIC acts.
    Russian citizens should GET OF ARMENIA if they feel unhappy.

  4. Antranik said:

    Kostanian wos no good when he was Artsakh army Prosecutor. He is even worst now.He seems to say a lot but very little in substance. One look at his face and you can tell what a conniving manipulator he is.People should protest in front of his office until he publishes copy of the letter he is supposed to have sent to the Russian Prosecutor General.As for that pig Aslanian,if he can’t help he should resign.
    The bigest culprit in this matter is the President. he may be the best we have got,but unfortunately he does not have the back bone to stand up to the Russian authorities.
    I hope the Avetisian’s relatives will fight till the end.As i can’t be there in person i am with them in spirit.
    God Bless them all.