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Safarov's extradition: Crime without punishment

2012-09-03 16:49

Safarov's extradition: Crime without punishment. 28142.jpeg

The recent extradition of Ramil Safarov to Azerbaijan, who served a life sentence for the brutal murder of an Armenian soldier Gurgen Margaryan in Budapest in 2004, caused a severe reaction of Yerevan. Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev pardoned Safarov, thus, the lawyers say, violating international and national legislation. In this regard, President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan stated about the rupture of diplomatic relations with Budapest.


Having learnt that Safarov was pardoned, Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan convened an emergency meeting of the National Security Council with the participation of heads of diplomatic missions and international organizations in Armenia. According to its results, he declared: "The extradition of Azerbaijani soldier who had killed Armenian soldier Gurgen Margaryan, is connected to the deal between the government of Hungary and the government of Azerbaijan".

Armenian President considers the extradition of Safarov a betrayal of Hungary's promises, excluding the possibility of extradition of Azeri criminal. "As a result of betrayal the criminal has got to Baku and now is free. Such joint actions by the Hungarian and Azerbaijani authorities have opened the door for the recurrence of similar crimes. Such their actions are a message for the criminals. Now they (criminals) know that they can escape punishment for ethnic and religious crime", Sargsyan said.

"I cannot stand it; the Armenian people and the Republic of Armenia cannot forgive this. I declare the rupture of all diplomatic and official ties with Hungary. Basing on the actions relating to the incident, we will judge about our partners' relation to security of the Armenian people", concluded the president.

Trumps in talks, a gross violation, a deal

Some experts believe that Aliyev is going to mislead the Armenians. "After this, Armenians abroad cannot sleep calmly, since many of the Azerbaijani Turks will surely try to show heroism by killing of Armenians", the international lawyer and former diplomat, the head of the "Mvdus Vivendi" Ara Papian said.

According to him, Azerbaijan opened an embassy in Budapest after the murder of Margaryan and never hid the desire to extradite Safarov. Azerbaijani official sources indicate that they have held secret talks with the government of Hungary for many years. "In legal terms, I am concerned about another issue - the repetition of similar crimes in the future. Nothing encourages crime as the impunity does", he stressed.

Director of the Caucasus Institute Alexander Iskandaryan believes that the pardon of Safarov is a trump card in the hands of the Armenian side in the negotiations on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. In his view, having liberated Safarov, Baku claimed responsibility for the brutal crime, "treating it as an act of justice". "Armenian diplomacy should focus not on Budapest, but on the superpowers, the OSCE Minsk Group and Azerbaijan", the analyst believes.

Hungarian expert in Armenia Benedek Zsigmond, who regularly visits Armenia, wrote on his page on Facebook on this occasion: "Today I feel ashamed that I am Hungarian. I apologize to all Armenians ... Today is the black day in the recent history of Hungary".

Burned the flag and demanded resignation

The pardon of Safarov has caused mass protests in Armenia. Yerevan residents took to the streets after Budapest extradited Safarov to Azerbaijan. On September 31 and August 1, up to 300 people gathered outside the walls of the Hungarian Consulate in Yerevan and burned the flag of Hungary.

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