Armenian authorities warn of risk of unrest amid opposition rallies
The opposition announced that it was planning a large-scale rally on May 1 demanding Pashinyan's resignation. Against this background, the National Security Service of the country pointed to the “real danger of organizing and conducting mass riots”
In Armenia, in connection with opposition rallies, “there is a real danger of organizing and holding mass riots,” warned the National Security Council (SNB) of the Republic.
The agency appealed to citizens “not to succumb to possible provocations, to show high civic responsibility”, to refrain from spreading hatred and calls for violence in public speeches or statements.
The NSS issued a warning ahead of a massive May 1 rally announced by the opposition. According to the vice-speaker of the Armenian parliament, a deputy from the “Hayastan” faction Ishkhan Saghatelyan, supporters of the “Resistance” movement will gather on France Square in Yerevan on this day. from different regions of the country and other forces.
“All the forces that are fighting for the homeland, for the Armenian people, this decentralized, networked struggle must at some stage intersect. This point of intersection will be May 1st, and we will continue our fight, — Aysor quotes the chairman of the Motherland party, the leader of the faction “I have the honor” and ex-director of the National Security Service Artur Vanetsyan.
Protests demanding Pashinyan's resignation have been taking place in the country since mid-April. The reason for them was the prime minister's words that the international community demands from Armenia to “lower the bar”; to demands for the status of unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh. The opposition regarded them as the readiness of the authorities to recognize Karabakh as part of Azerbaijan.
Pashinyan denies accusations that he intends to “surrender” Karabakh: “Surrendering Artsakh (Armenian name of Karabakh.— RBC), on the contrary, after the war he simply did nothing, and the surrender of Artsakh essentially became a reality. On the contrary, we are investing in Artsakh in unprecedented volumes, because keeping Artsakh means that the people of Artsakh will stay there. Save Armenia— means to ensure that the Armenians live in the country and, conversely, those who have left return. And this is impossible without peace».
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The conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the ownership of Nagorno-Karabakh has been going on since the 1990s. In the fall of 2020, fighting in the region resumed. On November 10, with the mediation of Russia, an agreement was concluded on the cessation of hostilities, under the terms of which a number of territories of Nagorno-Karabakh pass to Azerbaijan. In addition, Armenian armed forces should be withdrawn from the region.
In early April, Pashinyan held talks with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev through the mediation of European Council President Charles Michel. Based on their results, Brussels announced that Baku and Yerevan agreed on the preparation of a peace treaty between the two countries.
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