Businessman Ruben Hayrapetyan Accused of Violent Assault
Ruben Hayrapetyan, a notorious Armenian businessman and president of the Football Federation of Armenia (FFA), this week was accused of assaulting Arsen Avetisyan, a majority shareholder of Air Armenia, the largest airline in the country.
According to RFE/RL’s Armenian service Azatutyun.am, Avetisyan was reportedly assaulted near Yerevan’s Harsnakar restaurant, where Hayrapetyan’s security guards beat a man to death three years ago.
Speaking to reporters while at Yerevan’s Heratsi hospital, Avetisyan said the attack was led by Hayrapetian during a meeting held at the FFA Football Academy on Aug. 15.
“Hayrapetyan grabbed my hand, and when I tried to free my hand everybody else started hitting me,” he told Azatutyun.am. “I didn’t see who was hitting me as I lay on the ground.”
“They then took me to another place. Ruben Hayrapetyan was there and he continued to talk to me,”Avetisyan said.
While he did not specify the reasons for the attack, Avetisyan said he would provide more details about the incident in the coming days.
According to an open letter to Armenian President Serge Sarkisian from Avetisyan’s wife Izabella Melkumyan, the attackers demanded that Avetisyan sign a statement stating that he owes a substantial amount of money to Hayrapetyan. In the letter, Melkumyan said she had appealed to law-enforcement officials regarding the safety of her family in the past, and urged Sarkisian to ensure their protection by the state, reported Azatutyun.am.
Speaking to the press about the attack, Armenian Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamyan said that President Sarkisian had been informed of the incident and that respective bodies would act consistently so that the issue is “resolved within the law.”
Hayrapetyan, a former member of Armenia’s Parliament, resigned as an MP on July 3, 2012, after three military doctors were beaten at one of his restaurants on June 17, 2012. One of the doctors, Major Vahe Avetyan, died from severe head trauma. A public outcry, and petitions demanding Hayrapetyan’s resignation, led to his resignation.
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Source: Armenian Weekly
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