Opposition MP Nikol Pashinyan on Monday lay down in front of a public bus on the intersection of Baghramyan Avenue and Saryan Street in downtown Yerevan in a public protest boycotting the ruling Republican Party of Armenia’s decision to nominate Serzh Sargsyan as the next prime minister of Armenia.
Pashinyan, a member of Civil Contract party, offered apologies to all the passengers and drivers of the bus and other vehicles, who expressed complaints for being late for work or classes.
“I apologize to everyone, this is a political campaign,” Pashinyan said, offering the passengers to continue their route by walking.
The transportation remains paralyzed in a number of central streets in downtown Yerevan, including in the intersection of Abovian and Koryun Streets as police officers urge protesters to open the traffic, arguing they “limit other people’s rights”.
Pashinyan launched his 14-day protest campaign on 31 March from the second largest city of Gyumri to capital Yerevan as its final stop “to prevent Sargsyan’s third term in office as the next prime minister and put an end to the rule of the Republican Party of Armenia (RPA)”.
The RPA Executive Body and Council nominated ex-president Sargsyan for prime minister at a session held in the town of Tsaghkadzor on Saturday.
Under the new constitution adopted in referendum in 2015, Armenia is switching to a parliamentary system of government. The president will have mostly ceremonial role, with the real executive power vested in the prime minister.