YEREVAN (RFE/RL) — Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said on Monday that he has dismissed Artur Vanetsian, the head of Armenia’s most powerful security agency.

Pashinyan said the decision was made by “mutual consent” and “as a result of several discussions” held with Vanetsian. “We discussed several scenarios for Mr. Vanetsian’s further activities,” he said, adding that Vanetsian will continue to head the Football Federation of Armenia.

Pashinyan declined to give any reasons for the move, citing national security considerations. Nor did Pashinyan say who will replace Vanetsian as director of the National Security Service (NSS).

“There are different candidates [for the post] and I will consider them and make a decision,” he told a news conference held in Vanadzor.

Vanetsian indicated, meanwhile, that he himself decided to resign because of disagreements with Pashinyan.

“State-building has its logic: spontaneity of actions and decisions and a work style of not differentiating between primary and secondary and transient and lasting things is not the path leading to the realization of goals,” he said in a written statement issued during Pashinyan’s news conference. “It has nothing in common with the officer’s honor: the officer’s epaulettes are incompatible with such a course of events.

“Let my resignation be a sobering ‘Stop’ step,” Vanetsian added without elaborating.

Pashinyan declined to respond to the veiled criticism when journalists told him about it. He said he needs to read the statement first.

The prime minister’s spokesman, Vladimir Karapetyan hit out at Vanetsian later in the day. “It has to be clarified who wrote the text attributed to Artur Vanetsian,” he told the Armenpress news agency. “We hope that its authors are not the PR offices of corrupt persons who have ‘mistakenly’ avoided prosecution.”

“We are calling on General Vanetsian not to lose the officer’s dignity cited by him,” said Karapetyan.

Pashinyan appointed Vanetsian as NSS director two days after becoming prime minister in May 2018. The 39-year-old career officer of the former Armenian branch of the Soviet KGB has since been one of the most influential members of his entourage, overseeing a number of high-profile corruption investigations. Some Armenian media outlets have reported in recent weeks that relations between the two men have deteriorated because of Pashinyan’s dissatisfaction with the work of the NSS.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Sign Up for Our Newsletters

Get notified of the latest updates from MassisPost.

You May Also Like

ACA Participates In The Los Angeles County “Day of Remembrance For The Armenian Genocide”

LOS ANGELES, CA – The Armenian Council of America and members of various Armenian organizations and institutions, including the Armenian Diocese, Consul General’s office, Armenian Chamber of Commerce, and the Armenian Community Coalition participated in the annual Armenian Genocide recognition ceremony on April 17 at the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors meeting where Supervisor Michael Antonovich presented a resolution in recognition of the passage of his motion proclaiming April 24, 2012 as \”Day of Remembrance for the Armenian Genocide of 1915-1923\” throughout the County.

“‘No Place Like Home’: Ergir and the Ex-Ottoman Armenians in Soviet Armenia” with Ayşenur Korkmaz

FRESNO — Ayşenur Korkmaz, from the University of Amsterdam, will present a…

Senate Appropriations Committee Ensures Continued Funding to Artsakh

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Senate Appropriations Committee adopted the Fiscal Year (FY)…

Open Letter to U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

In a confidential communication cable recently exposed by Wikileaks, the U.S. State…