By Ruzanna Stepanian
The Armenian opposition will not after all try to hold an upcoming conference in Georgia and will manage to find a venue in Armenia, a close associate of former President Levon Ter-Petrosian said on Friday.
Ter-Petrosian’s Armenian National Congress (HAK) planned to discuss its political strategy at a government-owned conference hall in Yerevan on Friday, asking the authorities for a relevant permission earlier this month. But the government refused to make the hall available to the opposition alliance on Friday or any of the following days despite HAK threats to move the indoor gathering to neighboring Georgia.
According to Levon Zurabian, a senior HAK representative, the alliance no longer views Georgia as an option. “We have weighed up many factors, including the political impact, consequences, expenses, technical issues,” he told a news conference. “After all, the authorities, which are very mean-spirited and ready to create any obstacle for us, can do anything. They can even close the [Armenian-Georgian] border.”
Zurabian said the Ter-Petrosian-led opposition is confident that the conference will go ahead later this week or early next in a “small auditorium beyond the government control.” He declined to elaborate.