Budapest Case - the history of the murder of Gurgen Margaryan
Lt. Gurgen Margaryan
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Armenian response


Armenian citizen Gurgen Margaryan, 26 years old, was hacked to death while asleep by Ramil Safarov, a Lieutenant of the Azerbaijani Army. Both were participants of an English language training course within the framework of the NATO-sponsored “Partnership for Peace” program held in Budapest, Hungary.

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Statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Armenia
on the Murder of an Armenian Lieutenant in Budapest
by an Azerbaijani military officer

At 5:30 am on February 19, Lieutenant Gurgen Margarian of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Armenia, posted to Budapest to participate in the NATO "Partnership for Peace" Programme's English language training course, was brutally murdered in his sleep -- axed by an Azerbaijani military officer attending the same course. His attempt on the life of a second officer of the Armenian Armed Forces was blocked.

The murderer has been arrested by the Hungarian Police. Representatives of the Armenian Embassy in Vienna are in Budapest, working with the police and monitoring the situation.

This crime is the logical consequence of the anti-Armenian hysteria that has been left unreined by the Azeri authorities over the years and of the warmongering militarist propaganda of recent months, which consistently infects all of Azeri society. It is evident, that such state policy has crossed the bounds and officials, representing Azerbaijan abroad, can commit cold-blooded murder.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Armenia expresses its outrage and most vehemently condemns this crime. The Ministry expects that international organizations will assess this crime appropriately and react. At the same time, we demand that the Hungarian authorities punish the perpetrator to the maximum extent of the law.

The Armenian Foreign Ministry expresses its condolences to the family, relatives and colleagues of Lieutenant Gurgen Margarian.

Source: Official web site of the
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Armenia


Vartan Oskanian, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Armenia

... Azerbaijan not only does not rebuke, it champions the Azeri military officer who decapitated a fellow Armenian officer in a NATO training course in Budapest.

Source: Armenia - Statement by Vartan Oskanian
59th Session of the UN General Assembly
New York, September 29, 2004

Hamlet Gasparian, RA Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson

Such an act is the logical consequence of the warmongering statements of the Azeri government, old and new, and of the anti-Armenian hysteria that has been left unreined by the Azeri authorities over the years.

The horrifying act and the way the crime was executed reminds one of the anti-Armenian pogroms in Sumgayit, in Kirovabad in 1988 and in Baku in 1990 much before the Nagorno-Karabakh War started.

It is evident, that Azerbaijan's state policy of anti-Armenian virulence has crossed the bounds. Unfortunately, under the new President, such policy has been preserved and given new impetus.

Armenia has considered - and considers - Partnership for Peace an effective framework and format for many things, including normalizing its relations with Azerbaijan. However, our approach to the Partnership has not been reciprocated by Azerbaijan - even prior to this unprecedented act. There has been not a single PfP event that has not been used by official Baku for blatant and unsophisticated anti-Armenian propaganda.

Source: Official web site of the
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Armenia


Ashot Ghoulian, NKR Foreign Minister

Armenophobia in Azerbaijan has been raised up to the state policy and successively infected the whole Azerbaijani society... The reaction of the society and political establishment of Azerbaijan to the murder, who, instead of condemning the crime, are trying to justify the murderer, as it was after the Sumgait tragedy, has demonstrated once again the impossibility of Nagorno Karabakh’s existence within the structure of Azerbaijan ... For the recent years, the NKR authorities have repeatedly drawn the attention of international structures to the intensification of the anti-Armenian hysteria in Azerbaijan but, unfortunately, they have not taken any adequate steps do far.

Source: Official web site of NKR Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Karen Babourian, Secretary of the NKR Security Council

The recent murder of the Armenian officer in Budapest by his Azerbaijani colleague is nothing else but a logical result of the anti-Armenian hysteria fuelled by the Azerbaijani authorities. This cruel murder has once more proved with all obviousness the impossibility of defending the rights of the Artsakh Armenians within the boundaries of a common state with Azerbaijan.

Source: DE-FACTO informational-analytical agency

Speech Delivered by Ambassador J. Tabibian at the 497th meeting of the Permanent Council of OSCE
International response
Responses by Azerbaijani officials and public figures