Time in Yerevan: 11:07:36,   24 April

‘One of the greatest’: President honors slain PM Vazgen Sargsyan

YEREVAN, MARCH 5, ARMENPRESS. Sparapet Vazgen Sargsyan is one of the greats of our history of the late-20th and early-21st century, President of Armenia Armen Sarkissian said during an homage ceremony at the Yerablur Military Cemetery in Yerevan where the leadership gathered to honor the 60th anniversary of birth of the late prime minister.  Vazgen Sargsyan was killed in the 1999 Armenian parliament shooting when he was serving as prime minister.

Vazgen Sargsyan is often referred to as Sparapet, a military rank that has existed in the ancient Kingdom of Armenia.

“Today is in a sense a sad day, which is actually a day of huge happiness”, the president said. “60 years ago in a small village of the Ararat plain a wonder child was born, whose name was Vazgen. This wonder child earned a truly Armenian education in a wonderful Armenian family.  And every day he saw his dream from his window – [Mount Ararat]. This wonder child is one of the greats of the late 20th century and early 21st century - Sparapet Vazgen Sargsyan. Today we celebrate the 60th anniversary of his birth. 10 years later we will celebrate the 70th anniversary, then the 80th, 90th, and 100th, but the young 40 year old Vazgen Sargsyan will always remain, one of our national greats,” President Sarkissian said.

Speaking about the October 27 1999 Armenian parliament shooting, the president said it is a great tragedy in the national history and that it should get a respective worthy assessment.

7 other government officials, including Speaker of Parliament Karen Demirchyan, were also killed in the October 27, 1999 attack.

Edited and translated by Stepan Kocharyan

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