Armenia suffers political instability after week-long protests

Armenia suffers political instability after week-long protests

Armenia suffers political instability after week-long protests

Mass rallies began in Yerevan and other cities of Armenia on Monday protesting against the nomination of former president Serzh Sargsyan's candidacy for prime minister.

Protesters also rallied in the second city of Gyumri where they attempted to block a main road leading to the capital.

Protesters held up a huge, upside-down official portrait of Sarkisian and shouted anti-government slogans.

On April 17, eight days after his presidency ended and his handpicked successor was elected president by parliament, Serzh Sarkisian was voted prime minister in a 76-17 vote.

Protest organisers have vowed to mount a nationwide campaign of "civil disobedience" in opposition to the Kremlin-backed Sarkisian who was on Tuesday elected to the post of prime minister after a decade serving as president. Apart from that, they organized a 3,000-strong protest rally.

He also held the office of prime minister from 2007 to 2008. He was nominated by the ruling Republican Party of Armenia and the Armenian Revolutionary Federation/Dashnaktsutiun.

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In its statement, the police department, calling these actions illegal, says that the protesters divided into many groups are blocking traffic and disturbing people hampering them to move in transportation means.

Thousands of opposition activists marched in the center of Yerevan on Thursday, waving national flags and chanting: "Make a stand, say no to Serzh".

But the number of demonstrators has dwindled, down from roughly 40,000 on Tuesday evening - the largest protest Armenia has seen in years. The protests have been mostly peaceful, but brief clashes with police on April 16 left 46 people injured, including six policemen.

"As of 3:30 p.m. local time, 183 people have been taken to police stations", police spokesman Ashot Agaronian told the media.

"We must paralyze the entire state system and the power should pass to the people", he told the crowd, according to the BBC.

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