Opposition leader, supporters spend night at Sardarapat memorial

Opposition leader, supporters spend night at Sardarapat memorial

PanARMENIAN.Net - Archbishop Bagrat Galstanyan, the leader of the movement Tavush for the Motherland, spent the night with his supporters in Sardarapat where memorial complex to the Battle of Sardarabad is located.

Armenians celebrate Republic Day on May 28.

Police made nearly 300 arrests the day before – on May 27 – as Galstanyan and his supporters continued to demonstrate in Yerevan to demand Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian’s resignation.

The protesters were detained as they blocked streets in the city center in the morning to step up the pressure on Pashinyan. There were reports of similar blockages of highways outside the Armenian capital. The police used force to unblock them as well.

The chief of the national police, Aram Hovannisyan, accused the protesters of “behaving like thugs” as he oversaw the crackdown in downtown Yerevan, RFE/RL’s Armenian service reports.

The Armenian Interior Ministry put the total number of detained protesters at 284 in the afternoon. A ministry spokesman said 278 of them have already been released without charge.

The detainees included two opposition lawmakers affiliated with the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutyun) party. Footage posted on social media showed members of a special police squad punching and swearing at one of them, Ashot Simonian, outside the Dashnaktsutyun headquarters.

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