YEREVAN, September 5. /ARKA/. PACE President is concerned by the serious deterioration in relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan following the decision to pardon Ramil Safarov.
Ramil Safarov, an Azerbaijani army Lt. convicted by a Hungarian court to life in prison for killing an Armenian colleague, Gurgen Margarian, had been sent by Hungary back to Azerbaijan to serve his prison sentence where he was pardoned by Azerbaijani president Ilham Aliyev. Lt. Ramil Safarov was given a life sentence in 2006 by a Hungarian court after he confessed to killing Lt. Gurgen Margarian, an Armenian, while both were in Hungary for a 2004 NATO language course. Azerbaijan’s president decision prompted Armenia to suspend diplomatic ties with Hungary.
“I join the international condemnation of the ‘glorification’ of the terrible crime which Safarov has committed, and for which he has been condemned by a court in a Council of Europe member state,” Jean-Claude Mignon, President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), said today.
“His liberation is unacceptable, and I am extremely disappointed by the abusive use of a Council of Europe legal instrument in this affair.”
“This scandalous liberation is having very negative consequences on the already-strained relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan, and also risks destabilizing the situation in the region. I call on the Azeri authorities to reconsider their position, in line with the standards and the ethos of the Council of Europe,” Mr. Mignon concluded. -0-