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President of Armenian parliament calls opposition MPs for “true dialog”

Nikol Pashinyan. Photo: verelq.am

President of the Armenian National Assembly (parliament) Ara Babloyan, who returned from a foreign trip to Yerevan, right from Zvartnots Airport went to a meeting with detained opposition MPs – Nikol Pashinyan, Ararat Mirzoyan, and Sasun Mikaelyan, the press office of the parliament informs.

Babloyan is expected to call the colleagues for having “true negotiations with true agenda” in a normal surrounding.

On April 22, Pashinyan, Mirzoyan, and Mikaelyan were detained at an opposition rally; they are accused of organizing illegal mass meetings.

Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan and the leader of the protest movement Nikol Pashinyan had talks on April 22, but failed to come to agreement. After that, the authorities started dispersing the rally. During the clashes, Pashinyan, Mirzoyan, and Mikaelyan were taken to police. Later, the Prosecutor General’s Office reported they were detained.

Yerevan has been ridden by mass protest actions since April 13. The protesters speak against former president Serzh Sargsyan becoming prime minister. At a rally on April 17, the leader of the protest movement Nikol Pashinyan declared start of a “Velvet Revolution” in the republic. On the same day, the Armenian parliament voted for Serzh Sargsyan as prime minister: 77 MPs voted for it, 17 MPs were against.

After a constitutional reform was approved by a referendum in 2015, Armenia is switching from the presidential to parliamentary republic. Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan will have all power levers concentrated in his hands. Armen Sargsyan elected as president on April 2 will have only representative functions.

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