Armenia arrests hundreds of opposition supporters amid protests


Since last Friday, opposition supporters have held rallies to denounce Sarkisian's efforts to remain in power as prime minister after a decade serving as president.

Then on April 16, protesters and riot police clashed in a brief incident on Baghramyan Avenue - one of the main city streets housing the parliament, Constitutional Court and the Prime Minister's residence. At least 230 people were arrested, according to police figures. Armenian president Armen Sarkissian, accompanied by his bodyguards, arrived at the Republic Square in downtown Yerevan, where tens of thousands of protesters have gathered for another demonstration against the appointment of former president Sezrh Sargsyan as prime minister.

Local media reported that since Saturday morning protesters have been attempting to block the highways connecting Yerevan and Ararat, Yerevan and Aparan along with another road between Gyumri and Artik.

Sargsyan, who served as president from 2008 to early 2018, was elected as prime minister by parliament on April 17. It is because of his actions and his candidacy protests began.

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Protest leader Pashinyan this week called for "a peaceful velvet revolution". The protesters were chanting anti-government slogans and thumping the drums.

On April 11, Armenia's National Assembly ratified a Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement with the European Union. "State authorities have a duty to ensure public safety and health by applying the law in a fair and proportionate manner".

The spokesman for Sarkisian's ruling Republican Party on Thursday said the newly elected prime minister would not step down. You can sign up to receive it directly here.