Statement on the illegal actions of the police on August 24

At 6pm on 24 August 2022, a group of Republic of Armenia citizens and foreign citizens organized a protest at the Freedom Square in Yerevan. The protest was against the war (24 August marks half a year from the start of the aggressive war unleashed by Russian in the Ukraine).

From the very first minutes of the demonstration, the organizers were taken away (apprehended) by individuals wearing uniforms of the Republic of Armenia Police. Then, they started apprehending also the ordinary participants of the protest. In effect, the Republic of Armenia Police conducted arrests without any explanations. According to preliminary data, 20 individuals were apprehended to police stations. Among those arrested is well-known Russian blogger Alexey Romanov. The Republic of Armenia Police did not even allow to open the protest posters. Thus, we are witnessing the introduction in Armenia of a practice employed in backward and dictatorial states.

We categorically denounce the actions of the Police. Human rights, the freedom of assembly, and the freedom of expression must be supreme values in Armenia. We demand from the Police to immediately set free the arrested and to provide a public explanation for this unlawfulness.

Signed by:

Analytical Centre on Globalization and Regional Cooperation (ACGRC)

Journalists’ Club “Asparez”

Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly-Vanadzor

“Free Citizen” Civic Initiatives Support Center

Union of Informed Citizens

Helsinki Association for Human Rights (NGO)

Open Society Foundations-Armenia

Public Journalism Club

“For Equal Rights” NGO

Protection of Rights Without Borders NGO

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