Armenian President Serzh Sarkissian used the opportunity to make a speech during the plenary session of PACE to finally give some sort of an explanation about his decision to join the Russia-led Customs Union effectively blocking the way to the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement and the EU Association agreement that came with it. Continue reading
RFE/RL’s Armenian service (Azatutyun.am) aired the first issue of its brand-new “Lratvakan Kentron” (News Center) prime-time TV news program on September 30th, at 20:00.
April 9 turned into a strange day with both officially reelected President Serzh Sarkissian and his opposition challanger Raffi Hovannisian swearing in as presidents of Armenia.
The settings were rather different, as you can see from these two videos below:
The day turned a little scary when a couple of dozen opposition supporters taken to the police and the nose of a key oppositionist, Armen Martirosyan’s, was smashed into a bleeding condition in an incident with the police. The rumors about the murder of a young man, which later turned out to be unrelated and news about Raffi Hovannisian losing consciousness amid clashes with the police exacerbated the situation.
In the end, however, the day ended rather peacefully.
On April 9, incumbent Serzh Sarkisian will be sworn in for another term as president of Armenia.
As that happens, Sarkisian’s bested rival, Raffi Hovannisian, will be taking part in his own inauguration — the “inauguration of a new Armenia,” as he says. It’s unclear exactly what the event will be, but the timing is almost certainly no accident.
Hovannisian disputes the results of the February 18 election. He lost to Sarkisian by roughly 20 points, according to official results. He recently ended a two-week hunger strike that he had been holding to protest the election results and demand electoral reforms.
RFE/RL’s Armenian Service (Radio Azatutyun) discussed all of these issues and more with Hovannisian in an exclusive Google+ Hangout on the evening of April 7.
Watch a recording of the talk below.