Hayrapetyan Resigns from Parliament Following Death of Beating Victim

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YEREVAN (Hetq) — Parliament member Ruben Hayrapetyan announced his resig- nation from parliament last week out of a sense of “moral responsibility” he feels over the June 17 beating of military physicians at the Harsnakar Restaurant he owns on the outskirts of Yerevan.

The army doctors were beaten by restau- rant employees and a personal bodyguard of Hayrapetyan. One of the physicians, Vahe Avetyan, never regained conscious- ness and died in a hospital a few days later.

“I would give everything to have been there on that terrible evening and stopped the tragedy with my own hands. I would give everything to be able to turn the clock

back. But I can’t,” said the tycoon, who has the nickname Nemetz Rubo, in his public resignation from the parliament.

The move comes after a wave of public protest, both in the streets and on the inter- net, charging Hayrapetyan with creating an environment in which such a savage attack was possible and demanding that he resign.

There is an on-line petition calling on UEFA and FIFA to call for Hayrapetyan’s resignation as the president of Armenia’s Football Federation.

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“I should have prevented such a tragedy but wasn’t able to. Such incidents should not be possible in establishments owned by

myself and my family members. I cannot forgive myself and do not know how to ask forgiveness from others,” Hayrapetyan’s statement reads.

Hayrapetyan then goes on to ask forgiveness of those who voted for him in last month’s par- liamentary election since he can no longer jus- tify their expectations.

Despite the public anger and related protests that have been taking place in Yerevan and else- where regarding the beating death of, the authorities remain silent.

There has been no news as of yet regarding charges. So far, five of the 15 or so individuals who savagely beat Avetyan and his friends have been arrested.