By Ruzanna Stepanian
A party is determined to hold its congress in the open air after it has been denied premises in the government’s sitting halls.
The opposition “Hanrapetutyun” party has invited its senior members and guests, including foreign diplomats in Yerevan, to the square near the Matenadaran museum in central Yerevan where their congress is due to take place on Tuesday.
The party’s leader Aram Sarkisian explained that they had to make the decision to hold an open-air congress after their request for premises in the government’s sitting halls was rejected.
The refusal, according to Sarkisian, was not grounded in any way.
“Government chief of staff Manuk Topuzian simply said they had no opportunity to provide us with premises not only on October 25, but also any time soon,” Sarkisian said.
Sarkisian believes this step of the authorities is aimed at subjecting their party to a provocation.
“It is a KGB-style provocation typical of the 1960s. The authorities are convinced that they will be able to use it against us. We are not naïve, and we will not take the bait. We know when we are ready. The authorities know that, too,” Sarkisian said vaguely.
Sarkisian does not think that the decision to turn down their request was made by the prime minister. In Sarkisian’s definition, it is a decision of the administrative system.
The party has already sent out letter with explanations to those invited to its congress, including foreign embassies in Yerevan, informing them of the change of the congress venue.
The municipality of Yerevan and the director of Matenadaran were also informed of the planned congress in written form.