Saturday, 26 May, 2018

Armenia parliament swears in new PM despite protests

Tens of thousands rally in Armenia as ex-president elected PM Tens Of Thousands Protest In Armenia Against Sarkisian As Prime Minister
Frank Williams | 19 April, 2018, 00:17

The protests were aimed at preventing former president Serzh Sargsyan from assuming the position of prime minister.

Armenian lawmakers elected the prime minister for the first time in Armenia's history after the Constitution was amended and Armenia changed its form of government and handed more powers to the prime minister.

Befre that, Protesters led by the head of the opposition Way Out Faction of the National Assembly (NA) Nikol Pashinyan, surrounded the buildings of the State Revenue Committee and about a dozen other state institutions, virtually bringing the work to a standstill.

"You are young people, you are not prisoners, go out and join us!" he said, calling for a new major rally on Wednesday evening.

It said due to the unpredictable nature of the protests, there could be a potential for violence and for the safety of U.S. citizens in Armenia and therefore it is recommended that they avoid the areas directly affected by these protests and continue to monitor local media for further information.

Russian Federation agrees to extend rights of U.S. carriers to use its airspace
State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said earlier in the day that USA airlines had already begun diverting flights away from Russian airspace ahead of the deadline.

Anti-government protesters continue to block several main roads in the capital, using benches and rubbish bins to stop the traffic.

Armenians during an opposition rally in central Yerevan, the Armenian capital.

The police have already removed wired fencing from the avenue, where buildings of the parliament, president's compound, and the Constitutional Court are located, but deployed Police cordon instead. The protesters have been chanting "Serzh the liar" about the ex-president, who in the past said that he had no intention of becoming the country's prime minister after the end of his second presidential term.

"The scale of protests proves that huge public anger has grown over the past few years", political observer Stepan Safaian said.

Protests in Yerevan began on April 13. At least eight people died in clashes with the authorities.

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