ACTION ALERT: ANCA Calls on Community to Protest Axe-Murderer Safarov’s Release

The ANCA released the following Action Alert on Aug. 31, after reports that Safarov has been extradited and received a hero’s welcome in Baku.

Ramil Safarov

Tell Hungary’s ambassador that you are profoundly troubled by their immoral and ill-advised decision to extradite (release) Ramil Safarov, the unrepentant axe-murderer who killed Armenian lieutenant Gurgen Margaryan, in his sleep, during a 2004 NATO training exercise. (Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev immediately pardoned and freed Safarov upon his arrival in Baku.)

Call, email, or post your thoughts (firmly, but politely), explaining that this grave injustice compromises Hungary’s international standing, emboldens Azerbaijani leaders to be even more aggressive, and undermines the prospects for a real and lasting Nagorno-Karabagh peace.

Ambassador György Szapáry
Embassy of Hungary
Call: (202) 362-6730


The ANCA wrote to Ambassador Szapáry on Aug. 29, prior to Safarov’s release, urging the government of Hungary not to extradite him, in the interest both of justice and the cause of peace in the Caucasus.  (The text of this letter is provided below.)

Earlier on Aug. 31, the ANCA called on President Obama to “publicly criticize Hungary’s extradition of a known and unapologetic terrorist, to openly condemn Baku’s subsequent release of Safarov, and to demand his immediate re-incarceration for the remainder of his life sentence.”  The ANCA letter, signed by Chairman Ken Hachikian, stressed that “A lack of a forceful American response to this grave injustice would, in addition to compromising our nation’s moral standing, undermine prospects for peace by emboldening an increasingly heavily armed Azerbaijani government to continue inciting its own citizens to violence and to encourage it to continue making threats and to commit actual acts of aggression.”

ANCA letter to Obama

August 31, 2012

The Honorable Barack Obama
President of the United States
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, D.C. 20500

Dear Mr. President:

I am writing, in the spirit of your June 18, 2012 joint statement with the leaders of Russia and France, about the peaceful settlement of Nagorno-Karabagh, to call upon you to condemn Azerbaijan’s release of Ramil Safarov, a lieutenant in the Azerbaijani military who was recent extradited from Hungary, where he was serving a life sentence—with no expression of either regret or remorse—for the pre-meditated axe murder of Armenian lieutenant Gurgen Margaryan, in his sleep, during a NATO Partnership for Peace program.

As expected, Safarov’s return to Baku was welcomed, as was his act of murder, by officials of Ilham Aliyev’s government and much of Azerbaijani society. The Azerbaijani government apparently had committed to Hungary that they would continue his prison term; yet, Aliyev immediately pardoned him.

The facts of this brutal murder are as clear as the imperative for our government, which serves as a mediator of this conflict through the Minsk Group of the OSCE, to publicly criticize Hungary’s extradition of a known and unapologetic terrorist, to openly condemn Baku’s subsequent release of Safarov, and to demand his immediate re-incarceration for the remainder of his life sentence. A lack of a forceful American response to this grave injustice would, in addition to compromising our nation’s moral standing, undermine prospects for peace by emboldening an increasingly heavily armed Azerbaijani government to continue inciting its own citizens to violence, and encouraging it to continue its threats and actual acts of aggression.

I would like to also use this opportunity to, once again, request that you hold a personal meeting with the broad-based leadership of the Armenian-American community.  As I have written to you in the past, the absence of direct discussions between you and your Armenian-American constituents, a dialogue you pledged as a candidate to undertake, is unhealthy both for our democracy as well as for our diplomacy.



Kenneth V. Hachikian

Chairman, ANCA


ANCA letter to Hungarian ambassador

August 29, 2012

His Excellency György Szapáry
The Ambassador of Hungary to the United States of America
Embassy of Hungary
3910 Shoemaker Street, NW
Washington, DC 20008

Dear Mr. Ambassador:

I am writing, in the spirit of the longstanding friendship between the Hungarian and Armenian peoples, to share with you our concerns regarding published accounts that the government of Hungary may be considering the extradition to Azerbaijan of Ramil Safarov, a Lieutenant in the Azerbaijani military, who is currently serving a life sentence in your country for the February 2004 premeditated murder of Armenian Lieutenant Gurgen Margaryan, during a NATO Partnership for Peace program.

As you know, Safarov was convicted for murdering Lieutenant Margaryan in his sleep.  The brutal violence of Safarov’s cold-blooded, pre-planned axe murder–during which he nearly severed his victim’s head–is matched only by his chilling lack of remorse or repentance for his crime.  If he were to be returned to Baku, he would, very likely, be welcomed, as his act of murder was at the time, by government officials, political leaders, and many in Azerbaijani society.  Safarov’s extradition, in addition to representing a serious breach of justice in a clear case of homocide, would send a dangerous signal to the Azerbaijani government, emboldening it to continue inciting its own citizens to violence and, more broadly, encouraging it to continue undertaking threats and actual acts of aggression against both Armenia and Nagorno-Karabagh.

We are, as you can imagine, hopeful that the accounts that have been published on this matter are unfounded and that consideration is not, in fact, being given to Safarov’s extradition.  We would, of course, welcome the opportunity to meet with you and your staff to address our concerns in greater detail, and to discuss any other issues of common concern.  Thank you for your kind consideration of our views on this matter.



Aram S. Hamparian

Executive Director, ANCA


  1. Maybe that supposedly highly patriotic Armenian who claims to be related to Shahan Natalie and who organizes protests every weekend in front of the Armenian Embassy in Glendale, can now organize weekly protests in front of the Azerbaijani Embassy in Los Angeles: how about it ?
    The same patriotic guy who was asking Armenians not to donate to the Armenia Fund last November: you know, the “A Gift of Water, A Gift of Life” 2011 Telethon ?
    Highly unlikely: I am still waiting for any protest in front of the Azerbaijan Embassy by the same group for the murder of 3 Armenian servicemen travelling off-duty in their private sedan, and the killings-in-action of 4 Armenian border guards, by Azeri troops last June – whose leaders signed a Ceasefire in 1994. (a ceasefire supposedly means cessation of hostilities, right ?)

    I am sure Azerbaijan and Turkey were very impressed by the very high civic mindedness of some members of Armenian Diaspora, while both countries were working diligently to have an ax murderer released from Hungarian prison – and, then have Sultan Aliyev issue a Presidential pardon.
    The ax murderer is a free man, walking around in Baku, enjoying the Sunsets on Caspian Sea, while Lieutenant Gurgen Margaryan will never see another Sunrise.

    Go ahead guys: organize another protest in front of the Armenian Embassy; blame RoA for this one too.
    If only there were perfectly democratic elections in RoA, then this would not have happened, right ?
    If only there were no Oligarchs in RoA, this would not have happened, right ?

    Keep protesting, while Armenia’s mortal enemies are working diligently day and night to erase her and NKR from the face of the Earth.

    • “Maybe that supposedly highly patriotic Armenian who claims to be related to Shahan Natalie and who organizes protests every weekend in front of the Armenian Embassy in Glendale, can now organize weekly protests in front of the Azerbaijani Embassy in Los Angeles: how about it ?”

      Avery brother, I love it. You are right on the target.

  2. when Armenians refused to participate in Eurovision Baku, because of safety concerns, they were criticized and ridiculed by some.

    Here is the proof: if an Azeri murders an Armenian, preferably in their sleep, they will be pardoned and become an instant celebrity.
    And the more savage the murder, the higher the celebrity status.

  3. If a war break out between Artsakhi forces and Azer baboons I am sure this coward sub human will be the first to hide in horsey Alioff’s banker!!

  4. Typical Western/NATO behavior, typical Turkic behavior. There is one alternative, have the animal in question assassinated.

    • It will be no ‘assassination’: it will be an Execution.

      He has confessed and was convicted in an open court in a fair trial.

      Premeditated murder, with special circumstances – i.e. on religious or ethnic grounds – draws a death sentence.

  5. This criminal terrorist coward Safarov must face an Armenian court, or Armenia must make it very clear to Azerbaijan that it will not stop until this lowlife murderer is brought to justice.

    Note: it was determined in court that this clown who claimed “his relatives were killed in NK” was lying, and he was just a plain run-of-the-mill terrorist crimnal, which is why he got life in prison. He even attacked a Hungarian prison guard.

    A terrorist criminal has the cowardice to kill someone, regardless of their ethnicity, while they are asleep, and is then freed in a country of similar criminal-minded ignorant people. The worst part of this is that the “Azeri” public, instead of being outraged at Aliyev, are actually celebrating and declaring this coward terrorist a “national hero”.

    Azerbaijan just proved to the entire world that it is an illegitimate country.

  6. Avery and Daron,

    I would like to meet with you both to discuss your concerns regarding the work I do. Please email me your contact information as soon as possible so we can meet face to face or in the event that we do not reside in close proximity, via skype. Clearly you are both misinformed.

    You can email me at:

    • I am very well informed Mr. Manoogian:

      I saw you at the ANCA Grassroots at the Universal last November 2011, when you accosted Robert Avetisyan, the permanent representative of NKR.

      I have no wish to meet you or discuss anything with you.

    • Avery (I doubt this is your real name),

      In your mind you might think you are well informed, but you clearly are not. You are probably blinded by thinking it is not right to publicly discuss issues that effect our nation, or like Sarkis Kotanjian of the Armenia Fund, you work for the Armenian Government or side with them and hide behind the name “Avery”, as Kotanjian did with the name “Pahakazor” (see:

      The allegation you make of my “accosting” Robert Avetisyan, the reader can view for themselves and decide if your claim is accurate. You can find the video at: . My opinion about Avetisyan and Kotanjian has not changed.

      Avery, you are not interested in talking with me because you are a coward and know you have no evidence or defense for what you have posted. If you don’t present who you really are, then everything you post can’t be taken seriously.

      If you are a real person and not an instigator for the corrupt Armenian government, then you will meet with me. If not, may God judge you kindly.

    • Yep: it’s my real name.
      Nope: I am a US Citizen. Not connected to Armenia, other than being born in Yerevan, or any RoA or NKR Gov agency.

    • I may or may not be a coward, pal.
      But it doesn’t take a lot of bravery to protest in front of the Armenian Embassy in Glendale.
      Why weren’t you and your group in front of the Embassy of Azerbaijan protesting when Azeris murdered – murdered – 3 young Armenian off-duty troops travelling in their private sedan last June ?
      Why weren’t you and your group in front of the Embassy of Azerbaijan protesting when Azeri goons kidnapped, tortured for weeks, and then murdered the innocent 20 y.o. Armenian villager Manvel Saribekyan ? OK let’s assume the Armenian Fund is corrupt: how much money have you and your pure, non-corrupt group contributed to the family of Manvel ?
      Please provide us proof on your website of the moneys you have sent to the family of Manvel, who lost their only son and sole family support to Azeri murderers.

      You are announcing a protest at the Azerbaijan Embassy now ? You are too late: AYF – the real spearhead guys – announced a protest waaaaaay before you were shamed into announcing one. Nice try, No cigar.

      When terrorists attacked our country on 9/11, Pres Bush uttered a great line: “Whether we bring our enemies to justice or bring justice to our enemies, justice will be done.” (don’t like former Pres Bush much, but that was a great line).

      Here is a challenge to you, Tough Guy: you claim to be a descendant of the Great Patriot Shahan Natalie.
      If you are one, then instead of wasting time attacking your fellow Armenians, instead of wasting time advocating that Diaspora Armenians deprive the children of Artsakh of drinking water, why don’t you take the words of Pres Bush to heart, and work towards bringing justice to the ax murderer ?

    • Dear Avery,
      How old are you? I really want to get a better idea as to who I am communicating with. Are you a member of any Armenian organization(s)? If you are who you say you are, you sound to me like a blind patriot, ready to do whatever you can to protect the reputation of the Armenian nation, even if that means you sacrifice yourself and the masses to give the illusion that everything is okay. Now I really want to meet you face to face so I can see for myself that such people still exist in 2012.

      I’m not organizing any protest, nor have you shamed me in announcing one. I’ll participate and encourage others to partake in joining a popular movement to demand justice from Hungary, Azerbaijan, NATO I don’t see a need for me to organize something that others are already so driven to spearhead. Whoever does it will not be disappointed as it will be very well attended not only by Armenians, but Hungarians.
      Do you think I would get results with taking on Azerbaijan protesting what they see acts of war? Why should we expect anything less from them? Do you know how many Azeris we kill on the boarder every year? My guess is we get far more of their guys then they get of ours. Last time I looked, we were still at war with them and the reality is that these things do happen when conflict exists, as wrong as we may see it is. This is the reason you don’t see protests in front of their embassy as you would like. Such actions are a waste of time and resources. Of course we should be asking ourselves why these senseless deaths are not being prevented. I happen to know the answer to this since I’ve lived in Artsakh for many years. This forum is not the place, but if you meet with me, I can tell you face to face. Of course you won’t like what I will tell you since it’s those people you defend that have much to do with these deaths, not the Azeris. In short, it’s all about greed and their unwillingness to allow real experts that exist in Armenia today to secure the boarders with technology that would prevent 95% of these senseless deaths. And I can back these claims up with irrefutable facts. Get rid of these guys, fix the system and you will on a rare occasion hear about a death on our boarder.

      I would not call a protest in front of the Armenian Embassy an act of bravery. I would call it an act of love for the Armenian nation. I would call the dealing with the after effects and being labeled by people like you a trader an act of bravery. Believe me when I tell you, the same ARF, AYF, Armenian Church and the likes would love to join us at those protests if they could, but alas they depend on people like you for their financial support to survive, so can’t officially be a part of it. Occasionally a few of their members will partake, but as an individual, not representing their organization (see: And of course they will not say the things they said on the video on the record. What you are seeing is in most cases what they will say behind closed doors.

      Why should we protest and demand change from the Armenian Government? Because they are criminals who literally murder our people living in Armenia and Artsakh. They would also murder vocal members of the Diaspora if they could get away with it. All this for their own personal gains. They and the system they have created in Armenia and the Diaspora that too many of us have blindly supported is rotten and needs to be changed.

      Thank you for recognizing my grandfather as a great patriot. Have you read his book The Turks and Us (see: For that book, he was not only labeled a trader by the ARF, they tried to kill him a number of times and erased him from their history for about 60 years. Since our recent independence, the ARF has reclaimed him as one of their own. I would be interested in your observations regarding the content of that book. I would even be willing to send you a copy of it for free if you would like. And if you’re okay with the content of Shahan’s writings, then you should not object to what I am doing today and instead should embrace and support it.

      As for depriving the children of Artsakh of drinking water, you clearly have not read or comprehended my white paper on the Armenia Fund, which you can download for free at: and in Armenian at:

      My objection to the Armenia Fund is not for the sake of depriving children of drinking water. I was to deprive those in power from misappropriating the funds, which many times are used against those same children and their families. Read the white paper and if you see things with a clear and unbiased pair of eyes, you will understand my concerns and hopefully agree with them.

  7. In light of the recent developments, we are aiming to hold a large protest at the Consulate of Hungary for extraditing Ramil Safarov, an Azeri officer, who axed to death the Armenian officer Gurgen Margaryan. The current time and date is TENTATIVE (not final). Please visit this page for further detail about the planned protest.

    Tuesday, September 4, 2012

    The Consulate General of Hungary in Los Angeles
    11766 Wilshire Blvd. Suite 410, Los Angeles, California 90025

    • Aliyev and co. At least Ogun Samast is in jail, not pardoned and celebrated- though some officers did ‘celebrate’ with him. Seems little brother Azerbaijan has a ways to go to even catch up to Turkey.

    • I thought for a moment you would recall here how Armenian assasins have been pardoned and left free and had heros welcome by Armenians everywhwre,

      Shoe, now on the other foot, hurts.

  8. The murderer of Gurgen Markaryan spent 6 years in Hungarian prison writing “patriotic poetry” and translating great Azeri authors into Hungarian language…

    How many years in prison would a person get in EU for killing an animal with an ax? Any experts on Hungarian cruelty to pets laws?

    And you thought just because you look like them and speak without accent the Great Civilized Westerners would treat you better then an animal?

  9. What else would you have expected from Hungarians? Didn’t they ally themselves with Hitler in WWII abetting his genocidal crimes? That tells you all you need to know about their humanitarian concerns.

  10. Shame on the Hu;ngarian Government for the releasing of Safarov from prison for the killing of the Armenian lieutenent Gurgen Margaryan in his sleep in Hungary during a NATO training exercise. The UN & all countries must be alerted to this tragic & shameful act and also to condemn Pres. Aliev of Azerbaijan for asking for Safarov’s pardon & release. A petition should be established for all Armenian’s to sign to not only the Hungarian Goverment, but to the United Nations, the U.S. Government to condemn on this tragic incident.

  11. It is an injustice to have pardoned a killer, and it is likewise an injustice and a shame on Hungary’s behalf for allowing this to occur. Armenia will not allow this hypocrisy to continue. If it were another country, the same might not have happened. But we will support the cause for justice – EVERYWHERE!

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