‘President, Answer!’ Disgruntled Yerevan Residents Say They’Re Ready



Residents promised units in new buildings constructed on Aram,
Yekmalyan, Buzand and Saryan streets in Yerevan continued their protest
today across the street from the presidential residence. They had
with them placards and warm blankets, preparing to stay outside as
long as necessary, until their concerns are addressed.

Recall, protesters yesterday promised to bring tents and sleeping
bags today; however, as protestors told the Epress.am correspondent
on the scene, police exhorted them not to take any drastic action,
“otherwise it won’t be good.”

Protestors were chanting “President, answer!”, saying that if the
solution to the people’s problems is beyond Armenian President Serzh
Sargsyan’s powers, “let him concede his position, and we will choose
another presidents at the next elections.”

Demonstrators pointed out that the time to respond expires today, and
if the issue is not resolved, they will be prepared for any measure,
even “disgracing our country.”

“We will go to some embassy – other countries are ready to protect us.

We will even go to the embassies of Turkey or Syria,” said one elder
woman participating in today’s demonstration.

The disgruntled residents say they are preparing to camp out near
the presidential residence overnight.

Recall, in 2006, the residents (whose apartments were recognized
as public priority interest) agreed to leave their homes on the
condition that they would be given new units in the new buildings to
be constructed on the same site. For this they signed an agreement
with a developer by the name of Gagik Papoyan, but the residents still
haven’t received their new apartments – in fact, the units have been
resold to third parties.

Late last year, Armenia’s Special Investigation Service (SIS) launched
a criminal case, but Papoyan cannot be found. Residents say the SIS
informed them that that the case could take months as hundreds of
people have to be questioned in connection with the case.

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