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28 Nov 2020 | 05:23 PM UTC

Armenia: Demonstrators to gather in Yerevan November 29

Demonstrators to gather in Yerevan on November 29 to denounce conflict in the Nagorno-Karabakh region; avoid protests as a precaution

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Event

Demonstrators intend to gather in Charles Aznavour Square in Yerevan on Sunday, November 29, to call on international organizations to pressure Azerbaijan to release Armenian captives and the remains of those killed in the recent conflict in the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region. Participants will reportedly gather at 12:00 (local time).

A heightened security presence and associated disruptions should be anticipated in the vicinity of protest sites. Clashes between protesters and security forces are possible.

Context

On November 9, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan signed a Russian-brokered peace deal which effectively ends the recent conflict with neighboring Azerbaijan over the Nagorno-Karabakh region. In the terms of the agreement, Armenia has been forced to concede control of certain areas to Azerbaijan. The news of the deal sparked demonstrations in the capital on November 10 and November 11, calling for Pashinyan's resignation. The country's 17 political opposition parties, including Prosperous Armenia, the Republican Party, and the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutyun), also issued a joint statement on November 9 calling for Pashinyan's resignation. Any gatherings will likely be well-attended and security forces will likely intervene to disperse protesters.

Over 1000 people, including civilians, have been killed since the renewed outbreak of hostilities. In addition to fighting along the Line of Contact, cities in Nagorno-Karabakh and outside of the conflict zone have been targeted in artillery strikes.

Armenia and neighboring Azerbaijan have a long-standing dispute over the possession of Nagorno-Karabakh, home to some 150,000 inhabitants (mostly ethnic Armenians) and located in the west of Azerbaijan. This issue has fuelled tensions between the two countries since 1988; with some 30,000 people being killed in fighting from 1990 to 1994. The two countries declared another ceasefire in April 2016 after the region experienced four days of violent clashes that left hundreds dead. Tensions between the two countries remain high and each side frequently accuses the other of violating the ceasefire agreement.

Advice

Those in Yerevan are advised to monitor the situation, avoid any demonstrations and large gatherings as a precaution, and adhere to any instructions issued by local authorities.

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