Armenian Opposition Halts “Pretence” Dialogue with Authorities


Mediamax news agency
27 Apr 04


The Armenian opposition decided to halt its participation in political
consultations with the ruling coalition, which took place at the
initiative of the speaker of the Armenian National Assembly in
parliament yesterday and today, member of the Justice opposition
block’s faction Viktor Dallakyan told journalists today.

A Mediamax parliamentary correspondent reported that Dallakyan pointed
out that the meetings between opposition and coalition
representatives, which took place in the Armenian parliament on 26-27
April, cannot qualify as “dialogue” between the authorities and the
opposition. According to Viktor Dallakyan, “these were political
consultations the holding of which is envisaged by the Armenian
National Assembly’s regulations”.

Viktor Dallakyan said that the opposition decided to halt its
participation in the consultations after the coalition
representatives, having a majority in the parliament refused to
discuss two out of 10 items presented by the opposition. In
particular, the deputy said, the coalition refused to consider the
issue of providing the Armenian citizens with the right to free
transportation and decided not to delay the voting for the bill “On
the procedure of staging meetings, rallies, marches and
demonstrations” in the third final reading scheduled for tomorrow.

Viktor Dallakyan said that today the authorities have again blocked
the highways connecting Yerevan with regions of the republic in order
to hamper the opposition adherents’ participation in the rally, which
will take place on Freedom Square, in the centre of the Armenian
capital, at 1600 today. “The authorities want to create the pretence
of a dialogue with the opposition but they continue to pursue a terror
policy in relation to their own people,” Viktor Dallakyan said. He
added that the opposition will not resume its participation in the
political consultations till the ruling coalition and the authorities
ensure the observance of rights and freedom of the Armenian citizens.