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Russian Soldier Admits Guilt In Gyumri Massacre: Russian and Armenian Prosecutors In Negotiations Over Investigation

Valery Permyakov, the Russian soldier who is allegedly responsible for the massacre of six members of a Gyumri family, was arrested, however it is still unclear which country will carry out the investigation of the homicide.

The Investigative Committee’s press spokesperson Sona Truzyan told Epress.am that there are currently negotiations between the prosecutors of Armenia and Russia.

“The thing is that Permyakov was found by the Russian border guards and is at the Russian base. An investigation is currently taking place; Permyakov has given a testimony. Because the current negotiations are between the prosecutors, for future details you should appeal to the prosecutor,” said Sona Truzyan.

In his testimony, Permyakov has admitted his responsibility in committing the murder of the Avetisyan family members, stated Deputy Police Chief Hunan Poghosyan to a group of journalists.

Poghosyan noted that the soldier stated in his testimony that he evaded his post and went for a walk, he became thirsty and knocked on the Avetisyans' door. According to him, he was unacquainted with the Avetisyans.

A case has also been initiated against Permyakov by the Russian prosecutor for abandoning the base, escaping his post with a firearm, and for attempting to cross the border.

Note, the 4th article of an the agreement between Armenia and Russia regarding “issues of jurisdiction and mutual legal assistance to cases related to the Russian military base found on Armenian territory” states that in case of criminal acts by Russian military base members, the Armenian legal code will be applied and the Armenian legal authorities will function.

At the same time, the 5th article states that crimes that occur within the Russian military base or against Russian military base staff or military crimes are examined according to the Russian law.

The 6th article states that in agreement with the two countries' legal authorities, cases related to representatives of the Russian base are distinguished in a separate proceeding and given to the Russian side.

Note that the press service of the Russian Federal Security Service's border department in Armenia has released details about Valery Permyakov’s arrest: “On January 13, at 12:15am, the Leninakan (Gyumri) border squadron soldiers saw a lone person around 2000 meters away moving toward the state border.

The squadron’s commander ordered the person to stop moving, however the person continued on. Then the border guards gave out the command of “Stop, we’ll shoot,” which the person did not obey. The commander fired a shot from a AK-74 in the air and forced him to lay on the ground.

The offender was in plain clothes, identification documents were not found on him, he carried three cellular phones, a flashlight, and 6,000 AMD. The person arrested was later identified as a 102-nd military base private soldier Permyakov, V.P.”

According to the Department Head of the Russian Federal Security Service's border department in Armenia, General-Major V.V. Biryukov’s decision, Permyakov was handed to the 102-nd military base commander in the presence of the military garrison’s prosecutor and military investigative department representatives.