YEREVAN — The chief of the Armenian army’s General Staff, Lieutenant-General Artak Davtyan, and four other generals were dismissed on Thursday through presidential decrees initiated by Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian.
The Armenian government gave no reasons for the sacking of Davtyan, one of his deputies, Lieutenant-General Andranik Makaryan, as well as the commanders of the army’s artillery and engineer units and the head of a General Staff division dealing with army morale.
All of the generals except Davtyan were replaced later in the day. The government did not immediately name a new army chief.
In what appears to be a related development, the chiefs of Armenia’s military intelligence and rear services were relieved of their duties last week.
Pashinyan installed Davtian as chief of the General Staff in March 2021. The previous holder of the top military position, Colonel-General Onik Gasparyan, was fired after he and four dozen other high-ranking officers accused Pashinyan’s government of incompetence and misrule and demanded its resignation.
Davtyan was widely expected to be sacked after being indicted last fall in a criminal investigation into supplies of allegedly faulty ammunition to the country’s armed forces.
Two other generals as well as former Defense Minister Davit Tonoyan and a private arms dealer were arrested as part of the same criminal case in September. They and Davtyan were charged with fraud and embezzlement that cost the state almost 2.3 billion drams ($4.7 million).