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Pashinian Calls For Protests Outside Armenia’s Courts


ARMENIA -- Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian (center) addresses supporters during a rally outside the parliament building in Yerevan early, October 3, 2018

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian urged supporters to rally outside Armenia’s courts and block the entrances to them on Monday morning for what he said will be “the start of the second and most important phase of the Armenian revolution.”

“At 8:30 in the morning we must block the exits and entrances of all of the republic’s courts so that nobody enters them,” he wrote on Facebook on Sunday evening. “At noon my speech will be broadcast live.”

“Tomorrow at noon I will announce the start of the second and most important phase of the Armenian revolution. I expect popular support,” he said in another statement posted earlier in the evening.

The latter post in turn came an hour after Pashinian wrote that he will make on Monday an “important statement about the situation in the judicial system and the establishment of the people’s power in this area as well.”

Pashinian’s appeal came the day after a court in Yerevan ordered his bitter foe and former President Robert Kocharian released from prison pending the outcome of his trial which began on May 13. The court’s decision was strongly condemned by many Pashinian supporters.

Pashinian’s press secretary, Vladimir Karapetian, also criticized it later on Saturday. He said “the old judicial system” continues to function in Armenia.

Karapetian also dismissed allegations by Kocharian’s lawyers that the Armenian authorities have pressured courts to keep the ex-president in detention.

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