Declassify the criminal case of the explosion in the Moscow subway on January 8, 1977
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40 years ago, on 8th January 1977, "The National United Party of Armenia", a group of militant extremists consisting of Stepan Zatikyan, Zaven Baghdasaryan and Akop Stepanyan, attacked the train on the line between stations "Izmailovo" and "Day" in Moscow subway, blowing up a self-made explosive device resulting in 7 deaths and 37 injured. This terrorist attack was the first in a long series of similar crimes, becoming a role model to many international terrorists who attacked the Moscow subway decades later.
As a result of operative-investigative activities in November 1977, the criminals were identified and incriminated, despite the fact that they were personally patronized by Karen Demirchyan, the 1st Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Armenia. Considering the severity, the increased social danger and the pronounced political nature of their crimes, the criminal case of Zatikyan, Baghdasaryan and Stepanian fell directly within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Supreme Court of the USSR. Hearings were held from 16 to 20th January 1979. According to the judgment pronounced on January 24 all of them were found guilty and sentenced to capital punishment – the shooting. On January 30 the Supreme Soviet Presidium rejected the petition for clemency and on the same day the terrorists were executed.
Nowadays the files of such category of criminal cases are subject to unlimited period of storage and are classified as "top secret" in Russian Federation. From freely available information about this act of terrorism, particularly from the memoirs of general major V.N. Udilov, the chief operational investigative group of the KGB, who led the preliminary investigation of this terrorist act, it is known that these criminals were involved in the attempt to another terrorist acts at the end of October 1977, in the waiting area of the Kursk railway station in Moscow, as well as in the preparation of another 37 (!) terrorist acts in other cities of the USSR. Besides the terrorism the criminals were also accused of other crimes subject to top secrecy classification inhibiting the public to know the truth about the crimes of Armenian nationalism.
Also due to this fact the names of the victims of the terrorist attack on January 8, 1977 remain unknown, it is impossible to establish a memorial monument on place of victim’s death, as done for the victims of other terrorist acts in Moscow. As a result the idea of national unity, which is expressed in the Day of Solidarity with the victims of terrorism on 3 September, is being devalued facing the threat from international terrorism.
The annulation of top secrecy classification of this criminal case regarding to Armenian terrorists Zatikyan, Stepanyan and Bagdasaryan will help to establish the historical truth about their actions and allow to tribute mourning, commemorate and respect to the victims. On the final step a memorial monument should be established not far from the place of death of the victims on the territory of the Izmailovo Park in Moscow city, as it has been done in the memory of the victims of terrorist acts in Dubrovka and Guryanov Street.
We demand the full declassification of all the files of the criminal case of the terrorist acts of the Armenian nationalists in Moscow on January 8, 1977, and to establish a memorial monument not far away from the place of terrorist attack in the subway on the territory of Moscow's Izmailovo Park.
Selective memory schould not be practices in memory of victims of terrorism
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