Hovannisian Leads Thousands in Mass Pledge to Reclaim Homeland

Raffi Hovannisian addresses tens of thousands at Liberty Square Tuesday

YEREVAN–Tens of thousands of people gathered at Liberty Square Tuesday for Raffi Hovannisian’s alternative inauguration, during which the opposition leader led the massive crowd that weathered the rain to take an oath to reclaim their rights, reject the authorities and work together toward victory.

By proclaiming the elections unconstitutional, Hovannisian proclaimed the people’s victory by rejecting the current regime and pledging to work alongside the people to create a new Hayastan.

Meanwhile, on the side of the city at the Karen Demirchian Sports Complex, Serzh Sarkisian took his oath of office by pledging to uphold the provision of the Constitution of the Republic of Armenia.

Calling Sarkisian’s event a fake inauguration and belittling the gathering, Hovannisian urged the people to continue their fight, which he said began on February 18, “but it does not end today on April 9.”

“I reject any illegitimate authority,” said Hovannisian as he recited an oath, which was enthusiastically repeated by the crowd.

Hovannisian invited Sarkisian, and Catholicos Karekin II to the square at 6 p.m. Yerevan time to join the people.

He also announced that he would unveil his program and his team during a rally on Friday, April 12.


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  1. George said:

    Tens of thousends: is it 90000 or 20000? if this is what he was able to gather, with these numbers he couldn’t have had won the election

  2. German_in_Yerevan said:

    The current President has not done enough to combat the two major cancers in the body of Armenia.
    They are the demographic decline (due to migration and lower birth rates) and the stranglehold of the small, oligarchic elite that is directly responsible for the economic stagnation.

    However, anyone that believes that having two Armenian Presidents instead of one will improve things is sadly mistaken.

    If Hovannisian had the greater good of the people of Armenia in mind and was genuinely motivated by a yearning to grow this country he would use the leverage he has after his spectacular achievement in getting 37% of the vote and cooperated with the democratically elected President and Government to improve things. He could mobilize public opinion to send a clear and much delayed message to President Sarkissian that the people deserve coherent geo strategic, demographic and economic plans and that current policies are not sufficient.

    Instead, Hovannisian has chosen to continue a long Armenian tradition of shooting ones’ self in the leg by putting personal ambition above the Nation’s interest. Washington’s “think tank experts” (the same “experts” that masterminded the carnage in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria… and supported the puppet Saakashvili in his failed attempt to turn Georgia into another Nato police state) couldn’t believe anyone would fall for their failed dogma until they found such person in the form of Hovannisian.

    A possible solution to this ‘storm in a tea cup’ that Mr. Hovannissian has created is to send a technocrat from Switzerland, Norway, Singapore or any other decently run country and award him the post of “Second President” to overlook the urgent changes that President Sarkissian often speaks about but is yet to implement.

    • Tsayt said:

      Hmmmm, I would agree with you if Mr. Sarkissian was indeed elected democratically. That sort of blows away your theory, doesn’t it.

      On the other hand Raffi with all his good intentions is learning that Armenian citizens are a politically fickle bunch. He would have succeeded if he had filled the Liberty Square with over 100 000 protesters, I’m thinking Cairo, Tunisia, Bahrain.

      Let’s face it, Yerevan is the only “city” (as we understand) in Armenia, and most of Armenia’s 2,5 million (on a good day) population is concentrated around it, therefore, 10 or 20 thousand people do not scare the authorities. In Armenian politics “10’s of thousands” is just a number that the authorities can easily deal with.

    • mihran said:

      Almost complete evaluation by German of Yerevan the most unfortunate issue is the lack of complete and honest accountability in the system corruption is unfortunately an accepted practice in our WORLD it is present in the USA/EUROPE RUSSIA CHINA JAPAN…..
      For Armenians it could have been acceptable if our homeland’s villages and secondary towns had a minimum level of quality standards No president Ter Petrossian/Kotcharian/ Sargesyan should have accepted this miserable situation while Oligarchies spent Millions of Dollars to built CASINOS AND LAVISH HOUSES …AND AND
      Our presidents should have immediately taken the appropriate steps to correct the poverty level of our secondary towns and villages HOW DO THEY SLEEP AT NIGHT!….
      World powers are providing enough help (DONATIONS ) for this very purpose it is INCORRECT to see no change in the poverty level shame..

  3. Avetis said:

    Now that this “democracy” nonsense is over, Raffi should be a man a stick to his promise of “over my dead body”. I want to see Raffi’s “diak”!

  4. Gurgen said:

    Enough is enough. Stop this silly nonsense with demonstrations and alternate ceremonies. It is getting too childish. If Raffi can’t come up with a more productive and mature ways to alter the political landscape in Armenia then he should go home. Enough devisiveness, enough negativity and enough destabilizing our tiny fledgeling republic. The system is far from perfect but Raffi is only making it worse. God bless the police for being so patient with these fools. I can only imagine what other countries would have done if faced with similar fools.

  5. Khach said:

    Raffi is Armenia’s last chance of becoming a prosperous nation. The misguided comments highlight some peoples inability to see the real situation at hand.

  6. Pingback: Election : échauffourées à Erevan – 9 avril 2013 | anthropologie du présent

  7. Haroutioun said:

    Ignoring people’s claims and causes of dissatisfaction, propagating sceptical/cynical/criminal gossips as we read above, is not the best way to show support and solidarity with the courageous and genuine popular/civic/student movement in action in Armenia.
    The history of the people in power since twenty years demonstrates that they only react under external or street pressure i.e. the turkish-armenian protocols story. Diaspora Armenians shoud encourage their organisation’s leaders not to take sides but make a stand for what is right.