17 May 2018 16:37

Relatives of Sasna Tsrer radicals stop blocking avenue in Yerevan, demand meeting with Pashinyan

YEREVAN. May 17 (Interfax) - The relatives and supporters of the armed group Sasna Tsrer, which took over the territory of a police regiment in Yerevan in 2016, have decided to stop blocking one of the main streets of Yerevan, Arshakunyats Avenue.

"We have made a decision to stop blocking the road, but the court building, the entrances and exits, will be blocked. We intend to meet with Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan. All issues should be resolved legally. We are now following his call," protester Pavel Yegiazaryan told reporters.

On Wednesday, a Yerevan court declined a motion for a change of the restrictions on members of the armed group Sasna Tsrer. The court found the facts used by lawyers to demand the replacement of their arrest with release with travel restrictions to be ungrounded.

Earlier on Thursday, the Armenian prime minister called on the people of the republic to stop civil resistance actions and the blocking of roads in Yerevan.

He also said he could not release members of Sasna Tsrer from prison by his own decision.

In the meantime, Pashinyan said on May 15 all political prisoners in Armenia needed to be released.

In the morning of July 17, 2016 a group of armed men calling themselves Sasna Tsrer (Daredevils of Sassoun) seized the territory of a patrol police regiment in Yerevan. They demanded the release of Jirair Sefilian, the coordinator of the Armenian opposition Founding Parliament, who was under arrest on charges of illegal acquisition and storage of weapons. The armed men also demanded the resignation of the president and government and the formation of a government of national confidence. They surrendered in the evening of July 31.