Hungarian officials received about USD 7 million from Azerbaijan for releasing Azerbaijani murderer Ramil Safarov:
“A few months before releasing Ramil Safarov, one of the oligarchs, who is also Deputy Prime Minister of Azerbaijan, Yaqub Eyyubov, carried out 27 large money transfers to Hungary, the largest of which was carried out on June 19, 2012. After a month Hungary extradited Ramil Safarov,” says Naira Zohrabyan, Chairman of the NA Committee of European Integration.
This corruption revelation is connected with Azerbaijan’s Laundromat scandal recently spread in the English media. Almost the whole Europe is involved in this scandal. Naira Zohrabyan says that the PACE has an independent body, which already examines the connection of the PACE deputies with the petrodollars received from Aliyev:
“Today already ‘Transparency International’ applied to that body and presented concrete facts on the current PACE deputies and as recently Head of the Transparency International has stated, they offered to use serious sanctions against those deputies.”
The situation of human rights and democracy in Azerbaijan is already scheduled for the discussion at the upcoming PACE session. Naira Zohrabyan expresses her hope that during this discussion, the MPs who have benefited from Ilham Aliyev’s Azerbaijan’s Laundromat Scandal corruption scheme, will be revealed.
“It is not as if European MPs are angels and can resist, for example, such temptations,” she mentions.
Naira Zohrabyan says that as a PACE Deputy it is hard for her to work in the environment, where such money laundering is taking place, but she considers the debate on Azerbaijan’s democratic gaps in upcoming session to be a unique opportunity to change the Assembly’s environment.
“Now Azerbaijan is trying to move all its resources to Brussels.”
Mrs. Zohrabyan doubts that after Azerbaijan’s Laundromat scandal the PACE will deprive the delegation of that country of vote or impose some sanctions such as those imposed on Russia, which does not have the right to vote in the Assembly.
“Am I optimistic that it’s possible? No. Why? International structures have such a resolution, which is a country involvement resolution. According to that resolution it is much better to involve the country than leave it in the status of an outcast,” says Chair of the NA Committee on European Integration.
By the way, according to Naira Zohrabyan, Armenia has never worked with the European partners with bribery, but presents.
“For example I present Samvel Mkrtchyan’s books, poetry books, which they are capable to understand. But it doesn’t work. You cannot compare brandy with millions,” says Naira Zohrabyan.