Listen Download Podcast
  • RFI English News flash 04h00 - 04h10 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/23 04h00 GMT
  • Paris Live AM 04h10 - 04h30 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 05/23 04h10 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 05h00 - 05h10 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/23 05h00 GMT
  • Paris Live AM 05h10 - 05h30 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 05/23 05h10 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 06h00 - 06h10 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/23 06h00 GMT
  • Paris Live AM 06h10 - 06h30 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 05/23 06h10 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 06h30 - 06h33 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/23 06h30 GMT
  • Paris Live AM 06h33 - 06h59 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 05/23 06h33 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 07h00 - 07h10 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/23 07h00 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 07h30 - 07h33 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/23 07h30 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 14h00 - 14h03 GMT Sat-Sun
    News bulletin 05/20 14h00 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 14h00 - 14h06 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/22 14h00 GMT
  • Paris Live Weekend 14h03 - 14h30 GMT Sat-Sun
    Features and analysis 05/20 14h03 GMT
  • Paris Live PM 14h06 - 14h30 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 05/22 14h06 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 14h30 - 14h33 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/22 14h30 GMT
  • Paris Live PM 14h33 - 14h59 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 05/22 14h33 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 16h00 - 16h03 GMT Sat-Sun
    News bulletin 05/20 16h00 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 16h00 - 16h06 GMT Sat-Sun
    News bulletin 05/22 16h00 GMT
  • Paris Live Weekend 16h03 - 16h30 GMT Sat-Sun
    Features and analysis 05/20 16h03 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 16h30 - 16h33 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/22 16h30 GMT
  • Paris Live Weekend 16h33 - 17h00 GMT Sat-Sun
    Features and analysis 05/20 16h33 GMT
To take full advantage of multimedia content, you must have the Flash plugin installed in your browser. To connect, you need to enable cookies in your browser settings. For an optimal navigation, the RFI site is compatible with the following browsers: Internet Explorer 8 and above, Firefox 10 and +, Safari 3+, Chrome 17 and + etc.
Afp

Armenia turns to Russia as political turmoil worsens

By AFP
media Armenian opposition supporters demonstrate in downtown Yerevan AFP/File

Armenia's top official was in Moscow for talks on Thursday, his office said, as a political crisis deepened with opposition leader Nikol Pashinyan appearing resolute to force the ruling party in the ex-Soviet republic to cede power.

Armenian acting Vice Premier Armen Gevorkyan's apparent move to secure support from the Kremlin came as protesters in the capital Yerevan took to the streets for a fresh day of rallies.

They want the ruling Republican Party to hand power after the country's former president Serzh Sarkisian, 63, stood down Monday from his new post of prime minister following mass demonstrations.

Observers have warned the crisis could destabilise the Moscow-allied nation which has been involved in a decades-long territorial dispute with Azerbaijan.

Russia has a military base in Armenia and President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday urged restraint when he spoke by phone to Armenian President Armen Sarkisian, who is no relation to Serzh Sarkisian and is a ceremonial figurehead.

Putin called for "all political forces in this country to show restraint and responsibility" in order to end the crisis as soon as possible, the Kremlin said.

The opposition has staged nearly two weeks of protests, forcing Sarkisian to quit as prime minister.

The Russian embassy in Yerevan said Wednesday that its officials had met with Pashinyan.

"The Russian side called on the organisers of the opposition protests and rallies to have a constructive dialogue with the current authorities and other political forces," it said.

Protesters Thursday planned to block traffic in Yerevan and rally throughout the day, responding to Pashinyan's call to pressure the ruling party.

- Threat to 'surround parliament' -

"The Republican Party has to capitulate before the people," Pashinyan told large crowds in Yerevan's central Republic Square on Wednesday evening.

The 42-year-old accuses the authorities of wanting to nominate a Republican Party candidate for prime minister and has warned that the opposition could boycott snap parliamentary elections.

"In case the Republican party dares to nominate a candidate, the people will immediately surround the parliament," Pashinyan said.

He has insisted the new premier must be a "people's candidate" and not a member of Sarkisian's party, and told reporters he was himself willing to lead.

Talks between the protest leader and acting government head Karen Karapetyan to discuss a "peaceful" transfer of power were cancelled this week.

"Karen Karapetyan has to unconditionally and immediately recognise the victory of our revolution and to give up ambitions to become a head of state," Pashinyan told the rally, which dispersed peacefully, late on Wednesday.

The Yelk opposition bloc has said it would nominate Pashinyan for prime minister.

But a lawmaker from the bloc, Edmon Marukyan of the Bright Armenia party, said on Wednesday Pashinyan was 13 votes short of a majority. A candidate would need 53 votes to get elected.

 
Sorry but the period of time connection to the operation is exceeded.