Monday, July 27, 2015

That case from Armenia

Remember the case from Armenia, where Valeri Permyakov, a Russian soldier stationed at a base in Armenia, is alleged to have murdered seven local nationals? It had been announced that he would, at last, be tried by Armenia rather than Russia, but the Armenian authorities have still not been permitted even to interview him. Indeed, he hasn't been seen, so there's no way of know if he is even alive, or of sound mind. A variety of theories have been floated, including that he was off foraging for food due to shortages at there base. In this connection, Colonel Denis Zorin, deputy chief of food supply for the Southern Military Region, has been charged with stealing $7.8 million in supplies from the Russian air base in Armenia. It is also not known whether Private Permyakov acted alone or with others. This article also points out that there is a conflict between the Russian-Armenian Status of Forces Agreement and the provision of the Russian Constitution that forbids extradition of Russian citizens to third countries. That argument seems to be without merit since the constitutional ban concerns extradition from Russian territory, and hence would not apply to rendition under the SOFA.

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