Valeri Osipyan

Armenia’s Police Chief Dismissed, Appointed Adviser To Pashinyan

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YEREVAN (RFE/RL) — Armenia’s police chief Valeri Osipyan was sacked on September 18, two days after the resignation of the National Security Service’s (NSS) head.

President Armen Sarkissian relieved Osipyan of his duties in a decree requested by Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan.

Pashinyan did not immediately explain the move.

In a statement, Osipyan said he “will talk about the reasons for my departure later,” and insisted that he had always been guided by the police “officer’s honor and dignity.”

The government’s official website later announced his appointment as chief adviser to Pashinyan. It didn’t provide further details.

While announcing his resignation on September 16, NSS Director Artur Vanetsyan criticized Pashinyan’s leadership style, which he said runs counter to “an officer’s honor.”

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Pashinyan has yet to name successors to Osipyan and Vanetsyan.

Osipyan was appointed to the helm of the national police service in May 2018, shortly after Pashinyan came to power following peaceful protests that he spearheaded.

He previously served as deputy head of Yerevan’s police department responsible for public order and crowd control, and personally monitored many anti-government rallies staged in the Armenian capital during former President Serzh Sargsyan’s rule.

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