Situation Getting Back To Normal In Armenian Capital

SITUATION GETTING BACK TO NORMAL IN ARMENIAN CAPITAL

ITAR-TASS
March 21 2008
Russia

YEREVAN, March 21 (Itar-Tass) – Life in Yerevan is getting back
to normal after the period of the state of emergency expired last
midnight. It was imposed after massive unrest on March 1.

All the newspapers were on sale on Friday morning, including the
opposition ones which were not published during the state of emergency,
because restrictions were put on the work of the mass media. It
was forbidden to hold meetings, demonstrations and strikes during
the state of emergency. Now army and police posts outside government
buildings, on bridges, trestles and transport conjunctions of Yerevan
were removed.

Armenian Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanyan and Peter Semneby, special
representative of the European Union in the Southern Caucasus,
discussed the domestic political situation in Armenia here on Friday.

"They discussed possible steps to be taken for restoring public
solidarity in the country," representatives of the press and
information department of the Armenian Foreign Ministry told
Itar-Tass. In their opinion, the maintenance of stability is a
guarantee of the development of the country, as well as of the
continuation of regional programmes.

Meanwhile, the radical opposition announced that "a silent protest
action" would be held in the central part of Yerevan on Friday in
protest against "violence staged on March 1" and for "honouring the
memory of all those who died" during massive unrest in the city.

The organisers of the protest action plan to make a chain of people
standing on the pavement, which will extend from the square outside
the opera theatre to the square in front of the mayor’s office.

Eight people died in Yerevan during massive unrest on the night of
March 1, including a police officer. 210 policemen and men of the
Interior Ministry troops, as well as 55 civilians, were injured.

The radical opposition refuses to recognize the official results of
the presidential elections in Armenia and maintains that it is Levon
Ter-Petrosyan, the first president of Armenia, who won the elections.

On March 8 the Constitutional Court of Armenia left without changes
the results of the voting, made public by the Central Electoral
Commission, which showed that Prime Minister Serge Sarkisyan had been
elected president.

At present the Special Investigation Service of Armenia is doing
preliminary investigation on the criminal case of the forcible
seizure of power and the organisation of massive unrest, aimed at
undermining the constitutional order, which involved the loss of life
and violence against officers of law enforcement agencies, who acted
as representatives of the authorities.

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