In a seminar last week in Washington, D.C., Christopher Kojm, former Executive Deputy Director of the “9/11 Commission” reiterated his concerns following an October fact-finding mission here to evaluate Armenia’s progress on getting to the truth of last March 1’s deadly post-election violence.
Speaking at a forum titled “The South Caucasus: A Year of Ballots and Bullets,” Kojm related the 10 deaths and hundreds of injuries of March 1 to a scale of United States’ proportions. “It would be a thousand killed, over ten thousand injured, and seven thousand imprisoned. Naturally, had that occurred in our country (the US), this would have been a topic of discussion and the American people would like to know what happened on that night. Who is responsible? Tell us the facts so that our country can deal with them and move forward.”
But the 9/11 investigator’s comments expressed doubts on whether such a report can be produced in Armenia due, largely, to the lack of involvement of any opposition representatives’ participation.
“Our (the team of three who traveled to Armenia) message to everyone was the same: No report will be seen as credible if it is written by the government, or if it is written by the opposition. A report will only be credible if leaders of different parties work together so that they are forced to look passed their preconceptions, their clear political difference, and that they are forced to focus on the facts.”