Police Brutality Disrupts Peaceful Protest

Heritage Party Vice-President Armen Martirosian with a bloody nose caused by police brutality

YEREVAN–Following an alternate inauguration that took place Tuesday at Liberty Square, where opposition leader Raffi Hovannisian led the tens of thousands in attendance in an oath to collectively reclaim their rights and advance the Armenian Republic through democratic reforms, protesters were brutally attacked by riot police as they marched down Baghramian Boulevard, the site of the presidential palace.

Hovanisian, who helmed the march, and protesters were met by riot police as they peacefully marched on Baghramian Boulevard en-route attempted to the Armenian Genocide Monument at Dzidzernagapert.

At one point, police surrounded Hovannisian and his family members, who were at the front of the line and during a scuffle, Hovannisian was pushed onto the pavement. In another part of the march, Heritage Party leader Armen Martirosian was beaten by police before being taken away into custody.

“This is our street, our right, our constitution. I’m moving forward,” said Hovannisian.

The riot police and armed officers, scuffled with protesters, pushing, shoving and dragging them on the streets. Eyewitnesses reported beatings with police batons, while protesters resisted.

Vladimir Gasparian, head of Armenia’s national police service, arrived at the scene moments later to negotiate with Hovannisian. The two men stepped aside to speak tête-à-tête. According to Nazarian, the opposition leader was offered to take another route to Dzidzernagapert., reported RFE/RL.


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  1. Ed said:

    The corrupt Armenian police used excessive force against the unarmed, peaceful demonstrators. The police in Armenia serves the interests of the bloody oligarkhs who care nothing for Armenia or the Armenian people

  2. Nareg said:

    These ill-advised Armenian officers should be monitoring our borders and scuffling with intruders not our citizens. Serge Sarkisian and Vladimir Gasparian should be ashamed of themselves. Hazar Amot.

    The way this was handled is point in case why Sarkisian is not fit to lead.

  3. Avery said:

    No, not really.

    It was an illegal march down a major thoroughfare and troublemakers attacking police.
    Protesters have no right to block a major thoroughfare: police were very tolerant and non confrontational.
    The mob took that as a sign of weakness and tried to force their way to the official residence of the President of Republic of Armenia.

    In no country of the world that would be allowed.

    In United States, cops would beat the s____t out of anyone blocking a major street and arrest hundreds.
    They would all be charged with: disorderly conduct, illegal assembly, resisting arrest, assault on a police officer, and a whole lot of other charges.

    8,000 or so Barevaloosers don’t own Yerevan: a noisy minority cannot be allowed to take of a city of 1.1 million.
    You attack a police officer, you gonna get a bloody nose.

    • Nareg said:

      YES Avery…really. It too is illegal to hijack an election is it not? Sarkisian and his corrupt oligarchs posing as illegitimate government officials of Armenia have no right to represent its people and neither do Armenia’s police have any right to defend these 2nd place finishers: our people have been VERY tolerant and non confrontational with these self important hooligans for years now. Sarkisian and his gangsters have interpreted this as a sign of weakness and have taken advantage of our Republic and used it as a surrogate business to promote their own self interest through embezzlement and deceit making a mockery of their roles and wreaking havoc on our people’s socio-economic status.

      Protesters may not have a right to block a road but I do find it highly disingenuous that you seem quite content with a group of oligarchs validating their illegitimate government for self imposed rule down the street without the will of the people.

  4. Դրօ said:

    “Police brutality”? I just watched a video recorded by Civilnet, another pro-Raffi Western propaganda outlet, and I saw no form of brutality done by the police. They acted appropriately with Hovannisian’s supporters. They did not attack anyone unprovoked (which is what RFE/RL is claiming). Only those who were in violation of the law got hurt. If this happened in the US, the protesters would’ve been beaten, tear gased, and tased.

  5. Jacque said:

    Are these police officers or workers from Disneyland .
    What a joke shame on them.
    Every dog has he’s day and its no different for those in power in Armenia .
    Judgement day will come.
    My respect to all the protesters . Freedom is not free .

  6. Harutik said:

    This is news? This incitement! Did you see the police hit him on the nose or are you just making things up to make your benefactors in Washington happy? Are you sure the “peaceful” protesters were not breaking any rules? I wish you tried your crap in LA and see what LA police would have done to you.

  7. Kirk said:

    Dear Raffi,
    I am so sad that as an intelligent,brave,well educated and charismatic leader you committed political suicide.
    Because of your uncalculated and naive actions today Armenian people lost,who were so eagerly expecting from you to fight for them,protect their rights and improve their lives.Gone with the winds…..
    You became a victim.
    So many other phony opposition politicians and organizations took advantage of your Barevolution movement,you will be betrayed by them.They needed your movement,they didn’t need you.
    We did not learn yet one important lesson,either in Armenia or diaspora,that nothing is wrong being in opposition.Sometimes you can achieve more by being an honest and brave opposition leader,rather than becoming a corrupt and unfunctional president.
    As for this article,unfortunately I smell yellow journalism.
    The protest march towards the presidential palace was clearly unauthorized by the authority,they were warned 2 days before that it will not be allowed and the constitution does not allow 2 presidents,but still some hotheads proceeded.
    May be there are some figures who want to fish in troubled waters.
    Azerbaijan and Turkey do not have any comments……