YEREVAN—Armenia’s former foreign minister and newly elected parliament member Vartan Oskanian was summoned by Armenia’s National Security Service and questioned in relation to alleged money laundering charges against him and the Civilitas Foundation, a think thank he founded four years ago.
Oskanian broke the news of the NSS’ case in a written statement.
“It is obvious to me that the criminal case that has been opened is politically motivated,” asserted Oskanian.
“I find it strange and astonishing therefore that my work and the work of Civilitas can in any way be linked to money laundering or illegally acquired funds. Even more astonishing is that such a question is being raised at a time when I have entered politics,” said Oskanian in his statement.
According to Armenian news sources, the NSS has confirmed the investigation, but has offered no further details on the charges.
“From the start, the Civilitas Foundation has been transparent, and operated in accordance with the spirit and the letter of Armenian law. Since its first days in 2008, the Civilitas Foundation’s programs have been supported by the governments of the Netherlands and Poland, the foreign ministries of Norway and Germany, the international development organizations of Switzerland and the UK, the US Embassy in Yerevan, the OSCE Yerevan Office, as well as other well-known organizations, corporations and individuals,” explained Oskanian.
“This has been public information. The government agencies of the Republic of Armenia clearly could not have been ignorant about these relationships,” added Oskanian.
Oskanian joined the Prosperous Party of Armenia this spring and was elected to parliament last month.