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Pashinian Sacks Top Aides


Armenia- Arsen Gasparian, chief adviser to Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian, speaks to RFE/RL in Yerevan, March 6, 2019.

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian dismissed his two chief advisers and another aide on Thursday.

Pashinian’s executive orders posted on an Armenian government website gave no reasons for the sacking of the advisers, Arsen Gasparian Aram Gharibian.

Gasparian is a former diplomat who lived in Russia after resigning from the Armenian Foreign Ministry in the late 1990s. He joined Pashinian’s newly formed staff in July last year.

Gharibian has held the government position since June 2018. His dismissal will take effect on September 2.

Also fired was an assistant to Pashinian, Mher Sahakian. A relevant order signed by the prime minister said Sahakian is relieved of his duties at his own request.

Pashinian already fired his chief of protocol and two other senior members of his staff in April.

One of them, Margarit Azarian, headed the human resources department in the prime minister’s office. Azarian is the mother of Artur Vanetsian, the influential director of Armenia’s National Security Service.

A spokesman for Pashinian said at the time that the three officials were fired because of their “inadequate execution of the prime minister’s orders.” Azarian claimed, however, that she herself decided to quit.

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