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Armenia's former defence minister arrested on corruption charges

A security agent points a sniper rifle from a window of the Armenia parliament building.
A security agent points a sniper rifle from a window of the Armenia parliament building. Copyright Hrant Khachatryan/PAN Photo via AP
Copyright Hrant Khachatryan/PAN Photo via AP
By AFP
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Armenia's former minister of defence has been detained on suspicion of abuse of power, fraud and embezzlement.

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The former Armenian minister of defence has been arrested by security officials on suspicion of corruption.

David Tonoian has been accused of "abuse of power, fraud and embezzlement in the purchase of arms for the armed forces".

He has resigned from his position shortly after the 2020 conflict with Azerbaijan for control of the Nagorno-Karabakh region.

Tonoian was appointed defence minister in 2018 and had been in charge of last year's war.

More than 6,500 people were killed in the six weeks of fighting, which ended in a Russian-brokered ceasefire agreement, granting Azerbaijan part of the enclave and surrounding areas.

The Armenian security services announced on Thursday that they had arrested the former minister on corruption charges.

The amount of embezzlement could be as high as €4 million, officials said, adding that "many other serving and former servicemen" are also under investigation.

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