In response to an inquiry by RFE/RL’s Armenian Service, the investigative body said that military investigators continue the probe into criminal proceedings launched last May on the hallmarks of Article 308.2 of the Criminal Code dealing with “abuse of official authority or duties” by a group of state official, which “negligently caused grave consequences.”
An official found guilty under this penal code article may face up to six years in prison.
Rafael Vardanian, a senior Investigative Committee official, said that Pashinian was interrogated in the status of a witness. He did not disclose other details.
The demand that Pashinian be interrogated was made by a group of parents and relatives of soldiers who were killed in the 44-day war with Azerbaijan in September-November 2020.
They claimed that one of the causes of the 2020 war was Pashinian’s abuse of power. The families of killed soldiers, in particular, referred to the statement that the prime minister made in parliament on April 13. Pashinian, in particular, said: “I was being asked if we could prevent the war. Yes, we could. As a result, we would have had the same situation, but without casualties.”
Nearly 4,000 Armenian soldiers were killed in the war that ended in a defeat of the Armenian side that also suffered territorial losses in Nagorno-Karabakh.
After Pashinian’s statement a group of parents and relatives of killed soldiers was holding protests in front of the government building and the office of the prosecutor-general, demanding that Pashinian be interrogated and indicted over his remarks.
The families of killed soldiers met with then Prosecutor-General Artur Davtian in front of his office, after which he decided to recognize them as victims and ordered that the Investigative Committee interrogate the prime minister.
The Investigative Committee did not say when exactly Pashinian was interrogated and what legal consequences his interrogation entailed.