After Releasing Hostages, ‘Daredevils’ Say They Won’t Surrender

Retired Karabakh military leader Vitaly Balasanyan (center) with a leader of "Daredevils of Sasoun" Varujan Avetisyan (left) during a press briefing on Saturday
Retired Karabakh military leader Vitaly Balasanyan (center) with a leader of "Daredevils of Sasoun" Varujan Avetisyan (left) during a press briefing on Saturday

Retired Karabakh military leader Vitaly Balasanyan (center) with a leader of “Daredevils of Sasoun” Varujan Avetisyan (left) during a press briefing on Saturday

YEREVAN—Hours after releasing four hostages who were being held at a police compound in the Erebuni District, a group calling itself “Daredevils of Sasoun,” which has seized the police station said they would not surrender.

The “Daredevils of Sasoun” representatives addressed journalist within the seized compound and continued to insist that opposition “Founding Parliament” member Jirair Sefilian must be released and President Serzh Sarkisian must step down.

The press conference was part of a deal with authorities that resulted in the release of the four hostages—two police officers and two high-ranking law enforcement officers. The deal also designates the entrance of the police compound as a “neutral zone,” and allows permanent press access to it.

“Daredevils” leaders, Varujan Avetisyan and Pavel Manukyan insisted that they would not surrender and are prepared for a possible attack by security forces with Manukyan saying that his comrades were prepared to seize other buildings.

Vitaly Balasanyan, a retired Nagorno-Karabakh army general who brokered the hostages’ release and was the lead negotiator with the “Daredevils,” also took part in the press briefing. He ruled out Sarkisian’s resignation.

Balasanyan told reporters that Sefilian had told him Saturday morning that his demands no longer include Sarkisian’s resignation but there were other underlying demands that if met, he would encourage the “Daredevils” to surrender

The Karabakh military leader said that the Sarkisian has urged the group to surrender and has given assurances that security forces would not attack the seized compound


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  1. Arn.Sweden. said:

    How sad to see Armenian Brothers standing aginst each other,
    in the Face of their common Enemy who has Stolen their Land.

    The Daring Devils should understand that,
    the Armenian President know more about all the Armenian People,
    Bouth in Armenia itself and abroad.
    His burden and Responsibility is then Much Greater/Bigger then Theirs,
    and He has to act accordingly.
    They should submit to His rule and cooperate with Him in all Respects,
    the time for the fullfillment of their wishes will come in due course of Time.

    God Bless the Armenian People !.


    • Maria said:

      C’mon what he knows of Armenia is how to spend money that people pay in taxes, how to leave villages at the boarder line unprotected and let people be killed. Have you visited Armenia recently and vitnessed what’s going in Yerevan. We are turning into India having rich upper governing class and poor working class.

      • Arn.Sweden. said:

        So ? – Do you advocate Anarchy then ?

        The Turks will take any Opportunity to finnish what they bagan 1915.
        Now is the time for the Armenian People to Unite and overlook their differences.

        The Armenian People surely have to Turn To GOD i Jesus Christ to Save the Country.
        Those who understand this has to bear the BURDEN OF IT.

        God bless the Armenian People,


        • Steve Hayrapet said:

          Really? Turn to god?
          How exactly? How is this god supposed to help?

  2. amb said:

    If the government gives in to the demands of the Daredevils of Sassoon, what is to stop another group from doing the same thing six months from now, taking hostages and demands things?

    That the regime is bad, corrupt, ineffective, incompetent, there is no doubt about that. But armed insurrection is not the way to go about affecting change in a civil society. Now matter how frustrating, hard, confusing and long-term the principals of peaceful political activism must be affirmed and insisted-upon.

    The principal of “rule of law” is preferable for a civil society than the “rule of gun”.

    • Arn.Sweden. said:

      YES !.

      The Daring Devils are only contributin to more of what is bad to what you wrote.

      If the Government is Elected by the People,
      they can not give in to Upproar or whatever,
      they have to exercise their Responsibility for what they was elected for.

      If the Armenian Precident is Vise and Prudent,
      He vill seal of this Policestation,
      and wait the Devils out.

      They have to surender or Starve och begin shoting.

      I Quote –

      ” Manukyan saying that his comrades were prepared to seize other buildings.”

      Comment –

      If so – Then They are playing with Fire and if continuing they will probably end up dead to no awail.
      The Elected Government of the People can not give in and should not either.

      Hopefully the Armenian People will Pray to God in the Lord Jesus Christ,
      to a peacefull solution to this crisis.


    • Avo Harutunian said:

      Im sorry to say but you have no clue as to what is going on in Armenia to sit back and talk about the rule of law that does not exist for the ruling elite is absolutely their rule of law is that there is now such thing for them or their immediate friends and family members. The ruling elite is conducting a Genocide as we speak entire families are leaving the homeland do you wonder why? take a wild guess. Its all about money for the ruling elite in Armenia they will kill their own people for money. These people starting with Serzh should be hung along side his brother from their balls in the middle of republic square. I stand with my brothers of SASNA TSRER!!!!!

  3. zarkim said:

    These police actions seem to be BRUTAL. However, comparing to other countries they are not. In any other country some people would be killed so far. Police actions in Armenia are not brutal. They are necessary.
    Yes, I agree with you. Armenian Government should make drastic changes. These changes will happen but will take time. May be Sargsyan and other reach people like him could chip in and help.
    You want to know what happens in other countries read the following and research using google.
    This Sassoon movement should be remembered and be used to fix problems. Government should find a way to end this situation peacefully.