Occupy Mashtots Park Activists Pitch First Tent While Surrounded by Police (VIDEO)
Environmental and civic activists who have been coming nearly every day for almost a month to Mashtots Park to protest the construction of shops pitched their first tent earlier today to kick off the next round of their activism — a round-the-clock sit-in.
Yerevan Deputy Police Chief Karen Movsisyan urged activists to remove the tent, saying that pitching a tent is not covered under the law on freedom of assembly, but activists did not comply. Lawyer Artur Grigoryan defending the activists replied, “All that which is not prohibited is protected by the law on rallies.”
The deputy police chief then asked to remove the tent “at least for the time being,” until he procures permission for pitching the tent from Yerevan City Hall. “If not for the sake of the law, then at least for me, remove the tent,” he added as a final attempt. Negotiations between the officer and activists were still ongoing at the time of publication.
At the time, activists had surrounded the tent, who were, in turn, surrounded by police.
Activist Yeghia Nersisyan said the first tent is symbolic and they’re not going to remove it.
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