July 21, 2016 - 10:37 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Police in Yerevan on Thursday, July 21 dispersed protesters after detaining dozens of others following a night of violent clashes over a four-day hostage standoff.
The armed group that seized a police HQ and took everyone inside hostage are members of the Sasna Tsrer movement. One police officer was killed, and three more were wounded in a shootout that broke as the members of the group hit the gates of the police department with a Ural track. Several captives have been set free so far.The hostages include Armenia's deputy police chief General Major Vardan Eghiazaryan and Yerevan deputy police chief Colonel Valeri Osipyan.The group demand the release of Jirair Sefilian, the founder of the Founding Parliament who was arrested on June 20, as he and a group of people had planned to seize premises and communication facilities, including the Yerevan TV tower.
At least 51 people, including 25 police were wounded Wednesday night, the health ministry said, after stone-throwing protesters attacked officers deployed outside the seized police building.
Police in turn, fired tear gas into the crowd.
The protest continued into the early hours of Thursday as some 2,000 protesters built barricades in front of the cordons of the police.
Early in the morning, riot police dispersed the crowd beating and arresting scores of demonstrators.
At least 15 opposition politicians from the moderate Civil Contract party were arrested, the party leader, MP Nikol Pashinyan, told journalists.