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Nearly 30 people detained in Armenia

April 17, 9:43 UTC+3 YEREVAN

The leader of Armenia’s Civil Contract opposition party said about 30 of his supporters had been taken into custody during clashes with the police.

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© Vahan Stepanyan, PAN Photo via AP

YEREVAN, April 17. /TASS/. Leader of Armenia’s Civil Contract opposition party Nikol Pashinyan said on Tuesday morning that about 30 of his supporters had been taken into custody during clashes with the police.

"About three dozen of our supporters are currently at police stations. I call on their friends and relatives to block the capital’s streets and avenues rather than going to the police," Pashinyan said. The police press service has confirmed the detention.

The opposition seeks to derail the parliamentary vote on the country’s new prime minister, which is scheduled to begin at 12.00 local time (11.00 Moscow time).

Armenia has gone through a constitutional reform to turn the country from a presidential republic into a parliamentary one. The president will become a ceremonial head of state, who will be appointed by parliament and whose authority will be purely representative.

In line with the country’s new constitution, the prime minister will become the head of the executive branch with vast powers, including to determine the general guidelines of the government’s policy. The ruling Republican Party of Armenia nominated Serzh Sargsyan, whose 10-year presidential tenure expired on April 9, to the post.

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