Thousands of protesters take to the streets in Armenian capital


On Monday, the ruling Republican Party and the government-friendly Dashnaktsutyun Party formally nominated Sarkisian as candidate for the post of prime minister despite the protests.

An Associated Press reporter saw several people wounded and at least four of them were transported away by ambulance including protest leader Nikol Pashinian.

Opposition supporters walk along a street during a rally in central Yerevan on April 16, 2018.

Six police officers and 40 rioters were injured in clashes and received medical attention, the Health Ministry said.

Protest leader Nikol Pashinyan was also reportedly among the injured and suffered lacerate wounds after falling on the barbed wire.

In 2017, Pashinian set up his own party and was elected to parliament as head of the Yelk election bloc. Opposition groups believe that the reform was carried out in order to Serzh Sargsyan was able to remain in power after his presidential term.

Pashinian suffered injuries to his hands and right eye and was rushed to hospital in a police vehicle.

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Some protesters chanted "Armenia without Serzh" and "Serzh is a liar".

According to several local media reports, riot police used batons and stun grenades against the crowd when demonstrators tried to break the police cordon blocking the way to the parliament building. The "civil disobedience" actions began early in the morning and quickly attracted thousands of demonstrators, many of them university students.

A shrewd former military officer, Sargsyan has been in charge of the landlocked South Caucasus nation of 2.9 million since winning a presidential vote in 2008.

Before Pashinyan said about the transition to action, "locking" of transport and the Parliament of Armenia.

The country's new figurehead president, Armen Sarkissian, was sworn in last week but his powers will be weaker under a new parliamentary system of government.

While presidential votes have typically been contentious affairs in Armenia, Sarkissian's election was initially met with comparative shrugs, and not just because the real power will now shift to the prime minister's office, which Sargsyan is widely expected to slide into.