A pro-government member of the Armenian parliament has been involved in a shooting incident in which he opened fire wounding a person after being hit with an iron bar.
Karo Karapetian, a member of the second largest Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK) faction in parliament, later said he used his legally owned gun for self-defense after being allegedly attacked and repeatedly hit by a fellow passenger in his personal chauffer-driven car.
According to a police report, the incident occurred on the Yerevan-Yeraskh highway at about 11.00 am Monday and followed a quarrel over personal matters between Karapetian and an Artur Zadoyan, a resident of the village of Dvin in Armenia’s central Ararat province.
The police say Zadoyan then hit Karapetian on the head with an iron rod prompting the latter to use his licensed Browning pistol and fire five shots in Zadoyan’s direction. The police report confirms that Zadoyan received gunshot wounds in the arm and leg.
In the afternoon, Karapetian himself told RFE/RL on the phone that he was at Erebuni hospital where he had had three stitches applied to cuts on his head. He claimed to have sustained concussion of the brain after being “hit three times with an iron bar.”
After having a conversation with Karapetian, the same faction’s member Naira Zohrabian presented some details of the incident.
According to Karapetian’s account, he was on his way to the National Assembly when one of his townsmen owing him a large sum of money asked to get into his car for a conversation. The man, however, started to hit him repeatedly with a metal bar after which Karapetian, in his own words, reached for his gun to use it in self-defense.
Meanwhile, RFE/RL learned that Artur Zadoyan was also at hospital in the town of Artashat, preparing to undergo a surgery.
“He has a wounded leg and arm and injuries on his head that are the result of beating,” a hospital doctor told RFE/RL on the phone.
According to Dvin village head Artsrun Abrahamian, Zadoyan is a farmer who returned to the village only last year after living for a long time in Europe.
Police say an investigation into the incident is ongoing.