Thousands Attend 6-Month-Old’s Burial as Suspect Pleads Guilty

Thousands turn out for 6-month-old Serozhya Avetisyan's funeral

Putin’s Spokesperson confirms that suspect will be tried in Armenia but in Russian military court.

GYUMRI, MOSCOW (Combined Sources)—Thousands of Gyumri residents turned out for the funeral of six-month-old Serozhya Avetisyan the only surviving member of a family gunned down last week by a Russian soldier, who died Monday after enduring life-saving operations and intensive medical care. Meanwhile, the suspect, 18-year-old Valery Permyakov, has pleaded guilty to charges leveled by Armenian authorities.

The crowd gathered at St. Neshan Church in Gyumri for the funeral mass, following which Avetisyan was buried at the Shirak cemetery next to his family members who were buried there last week.

On Wednesday, the investigative unit of the Republic of Armenia interrogated Permyakov at the Russian military base, following which he was charged based on corresponding provisions of the Armenian Criminal Code. The committee reported that Permyakov accepted the charges, essentially pleading guilty to the crimes.

Russian investigators have also charged Permyakov with multiple homicides and desertion from the Russian Armed Forces.

A special agreement was signed Tuesday between the investigative committees of Armenia and Russia to coordinate and conduct the probe into the murders and is being headed by Aghvan Hovsepian and his Russian counterpart, Aleksandr Bastrykin.

In an interview with GALA TV Wednesday, Russian presidential spokesperson Dmitry Peskov was asked to clarify a statement by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who in a telephone conversation with President Serzh Sarkisian vowed that Permyakov, would be punished.

Peskov said that since Permyakov is a Russian citizen, “naturally he will be tried by Russian court with Russian laws.”

The Russian Investigation Committee chairman is in Gyumri working with the Armenian investigators, Peskov explained, stressing that Russian laws are intolerant of such crimes.

The interview also focused on growing mass protests in Gymri and Yerevan with calls for Permyakov to be handed over to Armenian law enforcement to be tried under Armenian laws. Perskov said that while the presidents would not discuss the protests over the phone, the people of Russia were also mourning the tragedy.

“A terrible tragedy has taken place. It is a shared tragedy for both Armenian and Russian people. All the people in Russia are mourning. We also know that this tragedy is being politicized and used to spread anti-Russian moods but we rely on the wisdom of the Armenian people who know how close our countries and peoples are. That is why we want to believe that it will not affect our relations, especially when they are entering a new phase, I mean Armenia’s accession to the Eurasian Economic Union,” said the Russian presidential spokesperson.

“I understand that the issue is in the handover of the Russian soldier. Now I can only say that cooperative investigation is under way and it will be wrong to say anything about it. Let’s wait for the end of the trial and then speak about it,” he added.

Russian Foreign Minister Warns Against Politicizing the Tragedy
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Tuesday said that “The Gyumri tragedy is a heinous crime and Moscow conveys its deep condolences over the death of totally innocent people”.

While speaking at the conference on Russia’s diplomatic advances, Lavrov said attempts to politicize the Gyumri tragedy will not be tolerated.

“We see attempts to politicize this situation and they stem from neither the Armenian nor the Russian leaderships. There are many people wishing to use this tragedy to gain certain geopolitical benefits. It’s disgusting and intolerable and it is not honorable for proud Armenian people,” said Lavrov.

“We confirm the trial will take place in the territory of Armenia. It will be maximum open and joint. I believe the court will quickly issue an objective and adequate verdict – a verdict that will be appropriate for the committed heinous crime,” explained the Russian foreign minister.


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  1. Hratch said:

    Move the venue to Moscow where all things of great importance is decided by Tsar Putin of the new CCCP regional world order.

  2. Hratch said:

    “Peskov said that since Permyakov is a Russian citizen, “naturally he will be tried by Russian court with Russian laws.”

    What a bunch of bull. So what if he is a Russian citizen, he committed the crime on Armenian soil. It was not even on the base for crying out loud! This shows how much they respect Armenia and its sovereignty. This is a slap to the face of every Armenian! With this twisted logic, then we can also demand to prosecute every Armenian who commits a crime in Russia, since they’re Armenian citizens and naturally should be tried by Armenian court with Armenian laws???

    If our relationship is sooooo important to them, then why not have the courtesy to have the Armenian judicial system handle the case? What is so scandalous that the Russians want to control and cover up in the proceedings?

    God protect the Fatherland from all Russophiles both foreign and domestic !

  3. Shant Melkonian said:

    How tragic… What motivated killer? What inspired him? Was this unspeakable crime provoked somehow? Is there more to it than just a metal disorder? Any foul play? Conspired by a movement, government or a specific group? If so, they as well must be held accountable.

  4. Hagop D said:

    I agree that this case should not be ‘politicized’ – but that advice also applies to the Russian leadership and not just to Armenians. And don’t use this case as an excuse to flex your muscles on the Armenian nation and violate its sovereignty in the name of a “Russian citizen”. First, under no circumstances should the murderer be allowed to leave Armenian territory, before, during and after the trial.

    Second, while I believe Russia has the right to a trail of one of its criminal soldiers, it does not mean that its verdict should be final or valid in case of a conflict with Armenian laws. In other words, the criminal should be placed under several trials, in addition to trial from Russia, also by Gyumri itself and the Armenian military, keeping in mind that the Russian military and government is also open to have responsibility. If Russia attempts to take over the trial completely, it will bring suspicion to itself both as trying to hide facts in the case as well as trying to avoid responsibility.

    Third, this criminal needs to made an example of for the rest of the Russian troops stationed in Armenia or anyone else for that matter. Although Armenia does not have a death penalty, this can be changed in the case of involvement of military personnel committing heinous crimes. After all the information is extracted, trials and convictions completed to the satisfaction of everyone involved, Armenia should seriously consider giving this murderer the death penalty. That should send the message loud and clear.

  5. Gabriel Varjabedian said:

    This collective, cold, premeditated crime leaves thousands of miles away, a black hole of questions.

    A 10-day nothing has been done clearly and objectively informed society and public opinion on the motives of the act so.

    All the Republic of Armenia, Artsakh and attentive to the vicissitudes of what is happening Diaspora, can not conceive of this heinous crime, uncommon and in no way is a casualty of blotter.

    In fact it is producing a conflict of jurisdiction where it should not be.

    This unfortunate event has been committed in the territory of the republic, and outside the military protocol of the Russian base stationed in Guymri, so in my opinion should be subject to the law and the Constitution of Armenia.

    It is unacceptable participation of Russian Justice on this issue because the justice of Armenia is competent.

    Secondly the Armed Forces of Russia is all right to judge the soldier of yore, and subject to martial law and a military court.

    The authorities of the base should be the order of all investigations and requisitions of Justice of Armenia, on the soldier Permyakov, medical expertise, technical and operational of that individual.

    What is striking is a series of questions and possible liability to the Chief of the Base that are still unexplained.

    1. The Permyakov soldier was frank.?

    2.-. What the soldier outside your home at 4 in the morning did.?

    3. How Permyakov soldier carrying out their routine a weapon of high firepower.?

    • GB said:

      Putin will fill his beloved air base with fresh Central Asian and Caucasus Jihadists, and will transfer healthy Armenian soldiers Westward. Putin’s brain works like his former predecessor, Stalin and Lenin. Recreation of the new USSR is underway. Armenia surrounded not only by Turkic herds, we are surrounded by our internal “fake” protector. May God bless Armenia!

  6. Harutik said:

    Geopolitics trumps emotions. Armenians cannot afford to politicize this tragedy.

    Russia’s 102nd base is the most important single military factor in Armenia. The base acts as a tripwire against an invasion from Turkey. By securing Armenia’s western borders, the base also allows the Armenian military to concentrate its limited resources against a more manageable enemy, Azerbaijan. I would go as far as saying Armenia exists today because of the 102nd base.

    Politicizing this horrible tragedy is not in Armenia’s national interests for it serves to drive a wedge between Moscow and Yerevan. Driving a wedge between Moscow and Yerevan is something Turks, Azeris, Georgians, Islamists and Western oil interests have long sought. We must not allow it to happen. Russians are also shocked at what has taken place in their military. Yes, we want answers from Moscow but Western mercenaries in Armenia are not helping the situation by burning Russian flags and demanding that the 102nd base gets shut down.

    Yes, what happened was a sudden and unexpected blow to Russian-Armenian relations but we must not allow the tragedy to be exploited by Western/Turkish assets in Armenian society.

    We all know that generally speaking Armenians are overly emotional, politically illiterate and very family oriented. You want to seriously piss-off an Armenian and make him do irrational, self-destructive acts, mess with his family. You want to see an Armenian go insane and turn his environment upside-down, mess with his family. Whoever or whatever was behind this massacre knew our people’s weaknesses well. The assault was thus directed against the Armenian family. Now, all of Washington’s shameless lemmings in Armenia are enthusiastically exploiting this horrible tragedy toward self-serving political ends. Now, Turks and Azeris will be impatiently watching from the sidelines to see how self-destructive Armenians will get. Once more, I blame Yerevan’s “complimentary politics” for the volatility in Armenia because. Yerevan’s appeasement toward Western powers has allowed Armenia to become saturated by Western-led mercenaries during the past twenty years.

    Consequently, predictably and alarmingly, we are now seeing a growing trend of Russophobia amongst the new generation of Armenians. One does not need to be a rocket scientist to realize that if Russophobia ever goes mainstream inside Armenian society, Armenia will cease to exist as a nation-state in the south Caucasus. And every single one of the anti-Russian protesters we have been seeing recently would be the first to flee to Russia as soon as the first Turkish army division crossed the Arax River…