“An Armenian presidential candidate has been shot in the center of Yerevan, the country’s capital, late Thursday. The 64-year-old politician, Paruyr Hayrikyan of the Union for National Self-Determination party, was taken to hospital with a gun wound.
The gunshot wound in Hayrikyan’s chest is considered serious, but not immediatelly life-threatening. He was taken to the Saint Gregory the Illuminator medical center.
The candidate was shot near his house on Tpagrichneri Street in the southeast section of central Yerevan. Police are investigating the crime scene, but are not commenting on the incident.
Hayrikyan is one of eight candidates running for president in the Caucasus state’s February 18 election. The election campaign was launched on January 21.
“President of the Armenian National Assembly Hovik Abrahamyan visited Paruyr Hayrikyan at the St. Gregory the Illuminator Hospital. The Speaker described the incident as “a deliberate step targeted at destabilizing the situation in the country,” adding, however, that the criminals and the political forces behind them will not succeed.
Speaking to reporters, Hovik Abrahamyan did not rule out that the presidential elections could be postponed for two weeks as a result of the incident. “Nothing is clear at this point. Everything will depend on paruyr Hayrikyan’s health condition,” he said.
Armenian presidential candidate and leader of the National Self-Determination Union Paruyr Hayrikyan was shot in central Yerevan shortly before midnight Friday.