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Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Armenian police in action: beatings under music. Protests continue

Echannel and A1+ report that police beat few protesters who among others ‘infiltrated’ the open-air audience of the balloon-concert-show extravaganza to celebrate Serj Sargsyan inauguration as Armenian president and tried to ‘ruin’ it by chanting pro-opposition slogans.

They (authorities) knew perfectly well if they organise such pompous outdoor show in the heart of Yerevan, opposition supporters would obviously (and rightly so) try to hijack it. I think it’s entirely justified way for the opposition to use these means as no other ‘legitimate’ way is available for now. But they (authorities) nevertheless went for it, i.e they went for a provocation. Luckily, there was no blood this time, ‘only’ beatings, not sure if anyone got detained. Effectively, the opposition succeeded in spreading its message throughout the day (here, here and here) and night (see videos below, via E-channel and A1+).






You just can’t stick to the power relying on a physical force. Well, you may for a while, but only for a while. No lasting solution could be based on force and violence. There is no alternative to democracy in Armenia. Sooner the Armenian government understands that, the better it would be for them, and importantly, for our country. In the meantime, protests continue.

*photo - via A1+

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

some smart guy (guess it was Max Weber, but I'm not sure) said that
whenever the powers have to resort to force, it's a sign of their failure.

This is what's happenning in Armenia.
Whatever the authorities do they loose - if they use more force, they make people more angry and they destroy their reputation abroad. If they don't use force, it will be perceived as a sign of weakness and they'll be deserted by their own supporters.

They can change something only through open public discussion and negotiation, but as the past events have shown they aren't capable of any of these things.

artmika said...

*via reporter_arm (in Armenian):

Բռնոցի Հանրապետության հրապարակ-Հյուսիսային պողոտա երթուղով

Երեկ երեկոյան ընդդիմությունը որոշել էր օգտագործել Հանրապետության հրապարակում թույլատրված հանրային միջոցառումը՝ բողոքի ակցիա կազմակերպել։

Ժամը 20։30-ի կողմերն էր։ Օդապարիկների համերգը սկսվել էր։ Մեկ էլ ընդդիմադիրները՝ մի 100-150 հոգի երեւի, սկսեցին արտգործնախարարության մոտից «Լե-վոն», «Ա-զատ, ան-կախ Հա-յաս-տան», «Սեր-ժիկ հե-ռա-ցիր» վանկարկելով քայլել դեպի Աբովյան փողոց։ Ոստիկանները եկան ու ցուցարարներին բրդեցին Բյուզանդի նեղ փողոցը։ Մեկ-երկու հոգու ծեծեցին քաղաքացիական հագուստով ոստիկանները։

Մի ժամի չափ էտ համերգը շարունակվում էր, բողոքի ակցիայի մասնակիցները մտածում էին, թե ինչ անեն։ Վերջը որոշեցին գնալ Հյուսիսային պողոտա։

Կամաց-կամաց շարժվեցի էնտեղ ու հավաքվելով սկսեցին էլի վանկարկել «Լե-վոն», «Ա-զա-տու-թյուն»

Դե, երեկ ոստիկանությունը չէր եկել Հյուսիսային պողոտա։ Մի բոլ վանկարկեցին, մեկ էլ «տու-լու, լու-լու»՝ ոստիկանները եկան։

Եկան հավաքվածներին քշեցին ներքեւ։
Ու այստեղ եղավ հայտնի «Մինչեւ ձին մեկ-երկու-երեք-չորս անի, դու մեկ-երկյու, մեկ-երկու կանես»-ը՝ մինչեւ ոստիկանները իրենց մեքենաներով կհասնեին Հանրապետության հրապարակ, Տեր-Պետրոսյանի հարյուրավոր կողմնակիցները Հյուսիսային պողոտայով հասան էնտեղ ու շարունակեցին վանկարկել «Լե-վոն», «Սեր-ժիկ հե-ռա-ցիր»։

Դե ոստիկանները մի 5 10 րոպեից հասան եւ էլի ցրեցին բողոքի ակցիայի մասնակիցներին, բայց, համերգի ընթացքում նրանք արդեն սրտների ուզածի չափ վանկարկել էին…

Ու էտդեղ համերգն էլ վերջացավ, բողոքի ակցիան էլ…

Այ էսպիսի բռնոցի…

artmika said...

Tzitzernak posted in her blog a "rough translation" of A1+ article I am referring to in my post:

Police beat women and children during inauguration protests

During a concert organized in honor of Serj Sargsyan’s inauguration, a group of citizens of the Republic of Armenia, mostly of women and children, marched from Republic Square toward Abovyan Street, chanting “Serjig Go Away” and “Levon President”.

As some of the women and children arrived in the section leading to Pushkin Street, they were attacked by a group of policemen and subjected to brutal beatings and assault. As has become the custom of late, the polcemen were led by Robert Melkonyan. A young child who had witnessed the scene, recounted, amidst sobs, how an elderly woman was brutally beaten before his eyes:

You can’t imagine how they beat up that grandmother. They threw her on the ground and continuously kicked her with their boots and dragged her…”

The policemen allowed the beaten women and children to move on to Northern Avenue, where they continued to brutalize them, away from the public eye.

One of the victims, Robert Abrahamyan, recounted:

I was chanting “Levon President”, when the policemen attacked me and began to hit me in the head, swearing as they did so. There were five policemen beating me in unison. The police also twisted the arms of other protesters and took them away.”

Another victim, Samson Ghazaryan, who had been a member of the Karabagh Committee, was also assaulted. He had simply been standing near the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Republic Square. He recounted:

They said to me, “Go away from here”. A few seconds later, I felt a blow in the back of my head, after which they began to beat me repeatedly.”

The police also beat children, among them a little girl.

To stop the beatings, the group, who had not voted for Serj Sargsyan, moved toward Northern Avenue and continued to chant “Serjig Murderer”, “Serjig Go Away” and “Levon President”.

The chants were interrupted by patriotic songs. About 40 minutes later the policemen announced: “Your activities are illegal”. They approached those who had gathered at Northern Avenue and cautioned them that they were upsetting the residents of the Avenue, just as, at that very moment, the cheers honoring Serj Sargsyan from Liberty Square and Republic Square, were deafening everyone.

A few minutes later the number of policemen on Northern Avenue had increased. They now pushed the protestors to Republic Square, where the concert was on-going, surrounded by festive balloons and aerostats.

The protesters, now in Republic Square, continued to chant, in a louder voice “Serjig Go Away”. As they chanted, the protesters, supporters of Levon Ter Petrosyan, plunged among the attendees of the concert and walked towards the middle of the Square. In response, the volume of the amplifiers airing the concert was turned up as far as it was possible. But despite that, the chants “Serjig Murderer” could be heard in the Square. A group of plain clothes men attacked the protesters, threw them on the ground and began beating them. Among those being beaten was reporter Lisa Jagharyan, who confirmed that her attackers were policemen and retorted “Shame on you, Shame!”. But her voice was muted by the loud music.

By contrast to Robert Kocharyan’s inauguration, Serj Sargsyan’s inauguration proceeded without bloodshed—only through assaults and brutalities, all with the accompaniment of music.

At this moment the location of those arrested is unknown.

Հայկ said...

Ո՞վ կերավ Սեռժիկի տորթը
http://www.payqar.org/am/33

Anonymous said...

նեխած-անբարո պետական համակարգ, նեխած-անբարո քաղաքական դաշտ լապիդառ խոսրավատիպ թրթուռներով

NICE WAY TO PUT IT...

artmika said...

Anonymous, out of curiosity, what does it mean - "լապիդառ խոսրավատիպ"?

sepian65 said...

How about this:
according to article in ArmToday http://www.armtoday.info/default.asp?Lang=_Ru&NewsID=3677&SectionID=-2&RegionID=0&Date=04/10/2008&PagePosition=1
in some instances the police officers were holding young protesters and thugs with Republican Party pins were brutally beating them up.

Anonymous said...

Artmika
no idea, even wikipedia deosn't know this word but sounds beautiful.
As for Khosrovatip that's probably a reference to Khosrov Harutyunyan who was a PM during Levon.

Btw check out the analysis here
http://armenianpolitics.wordpress.com/

Armen Filadelfiatsi said...

Don't mean to butt-in, but I think լապիդառ may be a transliteration of "lapidary."

խոսրավատիպ I can't figure out, but I think it probably it isn't a reference to Khosrov because it's not spelled that way and if that were the case then it would lead to caterpillars that look like Khosrov, I think. Don't know. A tough one. It might be a typo, too.

artmika said...

Not to worry guys, thanks. I was really curious since it sounds like an interesting thought but I could not figure out its meaning.