The body of Hratch Mouradyan, the head of the Proshian village in the Kotayk region of Armenia was found Tuesday in front the village municipal headquarters by his brother.
Mouradian, a member of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation and an Artsakh War hero was reportedly gunned down as he was headed to his job and suffered injuries on his right temple.
Mouradian had an exemplary career from the onset of the Karabakh liberation movement until its end. He was awarded the Military Cross and several medals for his service to his country and heroism on the battlefield in Artsakh.
Police reported that shrapnel from a bullet was recovered from the 50-year-old village leader during preliminary forensic investigation by the medical examiner. To identify the make and caliber of the weapon used to shoot Mouradyan an investigative task force has been assigned by the prosecutor’s office.
The head of Nairi unit of the Armenian Police Force, Arsen Sargsyan told reporters that a criminal investigation was underway.
“At this time, we do not know what type of weapon was used and a criminal investigation has been launched to determine the motive and other facts about Mouradian’s murder,” said Sargsyan, who did not reveal more information to reporters.
The ARF Supreme Council of Armenia issued an announcement, in which it called the killing a “pre-meditated and planned killing.”
“Regardless of who the culprits are, it is evident that the crime occurred in an atmosphere of impunity and lawlessness,” said the Supreme Council announcement.
Mouradian served as the head of the village since 2005 and enjoyed the support and popularity of his villagers, which, according to the ARF Supreme Council of Armenia, had made certain circles unhappy.
The announcement stated that during his tenure, efforts were always made to destabilize his administration of the village.
“In condemning this crime, the ARF demands the quick and complete revelation of the crime and due punishment for those responsible,” said the announcement.
Date: 20 February 1988 – 16 May 1994
(6 years, 2 months, 3 weeks and 5 days)
Location: Nagorno-Karabakh, Armenia and Azerbaijan
Result: Armenian military victory
Ceasefire treaty: (Bishkek Protocol, still in effect); ongoing peace talks to determine the future of the disputed territory
Casualties and losses:
VILNIUS, Lithuania—The Lithuania-Artsakh Parliamentary Friendship group, which includes members from five political factions from the Baltic country’s legislature, began its activities on Thursday.
Last week, Asbarez reported on the establishment of the group, which took place on February 26 following a conference entitled “Lithuania and Armenia: a look to the recent past” dedicated to the 25 anniversary of the democratic movements in Armenia and Lithuania and the National liberation struggle of the Armenians of Artsakh that took place in the Lithuanian parliament, known as Seym.
Despite pressures from Azeri authorities, nine members of parliament signed the agreement to form the group. But on Thursday, the number of Lithuanian parliament members jumped to 12.
The names of participating parliament members were published in the official Web site of the Lithuanian foreign ministry. At the start of the session, the group’s president, Vitaoutas Gabsiz called on his fellow parliament members to join the group.
Former Lithuanian interior minister Audronoyus Ajubalis announced that the creation of such a group would hinder Lithuania’s foreign policy efforts, saying that the Azeri Ambassador to Lithuania had sent a protest note on the formation of this committee warning of the adverse impact on Azeri-Lithuanian relations. He added that such parliamentary groups are only formed with entities that are internationally recognized.
The parliamentary group’s founder Dangutė Mikutienė countered that statement by saying that there were already working groups within Seym that cooperate with unrecognized republics.
“Lithuania is a democratic country and Seym members have a free mandate. They can establish friendly relations with other countries, among them nations that have not been internationally recognized,” said Mikutienė.
“Perhaps I should read the list of countries that have similar friendship groups, which have been approved by your [Ajubalis] party. They are Cuba, Taiwan, Chechnya and Tibet,” added Mikutienė.
I have yet to figure out where all this is going. I’m watching and waiting and still following the hashtags #armvote13 and #barevolution on twitter but I feel like much of the luster has been lost. We live in a day and age where everything occurs promptly. I suppose I have technology to blame for my impatience and political backstabings seen around the world to blame for my mistrust. I want to see a better Armenia, a home without the threat of poverty, with people who question everything and offer their own answers. I want to see hope shining in the eyes of the children and for Armenia to be known for her inventors, the children bred on her soil who have created the most astonishing and groundbreaking inventions yet. Is this the world Raffi promises or are we to be disappointed over and over again?
Opposition leader Raffi Hovannisian just said at a barevolution rally on Freedom Square in Yerevan that Serge Sarkisian will be sworn in as president “over my dead body,” adding that he will start a hunger strike on the square.
“I am starting a hunger strike. I will not eat, and I will not accept deception and threats from anyone,” Hovannisian said.
“If on April 9, Sarkisian takes his fake oath on the Holy Bible, and if the Catholicos desecrates the Bible and blesses the candidate [Sarkisian] who mocks the people, then that will happen over my dead body,” he said.
Until April 9, Mr. Sarkisian should accept the demand of the overwhelming majority of the population, recognize the victory of the people, and resign, noted Hovannisian.
Hovannisian also demanded the resignation of all governors. Having appealed to the Constitutional Court to present its verdict on the presidential election, he added, “If the Constitutional Court does not correct its path, we will say goodbye to them too, and we will create our own court on the square.”