Today, at around 1:40 PM the parents of soldiers who died during peacetime were subject to violence by police in front of the Presidential Palace.
The protest participants wished to be informed as to why their letter addressed to the President sent on November 27 was left unanswered by the Presidential Palace. At the beginning of the protest the parents were standing in front of the presidential gates when police demanded they move across the street. “Our patience has a limit,” said a police officer.
When the parents refused to meet the demand, one of the police officers ordered a barricade to be formed. The police called each other to rush and began pushing the parents. The police officers held Gohar Sargsyan, the mother of soldier Tigran Ohanjanyan who died in 2007, by her feet and arms and moved her across the street. Gohar Sargsyan’s husband Suren Ohanjanyan, who was laying on the ground as a sign of protest, was also carried across the street.
After police violently moved Gohar Sargsyan, the latter’s blood pressure had skyrocketed and she fainted. The police called an ambulance. Sargsyan received medical treatment; her clothes and shoes were damaged as a result of the police actions.
Members of the Ombudsman office’s quick response team led by Rafael Poghosyan arrived on the scene. The eyewitnesses present during the incident explained what had happened.
The representatives of the Ombudsman’s office asked for clarifications from the police coordinator Arabkir deputy department head Gagik Hakobyan, who said that the Presidential Palace is a specially protected zone and demonstrations in front of it are not allowed.
The parents stressed that they have held multiple protests in front of the Presidential Palace before. They are ready to go to court in relation to the actions of the police.