Protests Over ‘The Bringer of Bread’s’ Death Continue; Clashes Erupt

YEREVAN (A.W.)—Clashes broke out between demonstrators and Armenian police over the weekend, as protests following the death of the “the bringer of bread” Artur Sargsyan continued.

Scenes from the protests (Photo: Photolure)

Over a 1,000 people gathered in downtown Yerevan on multiple occasions throughout the weekend to demand the proper investigation of Sargsyan’s death, according to several reports.

On March 19, protesters marched towards the government building, where they initially sat on the street and attempted to close it. There, they were met with police officers, who forcefully attempted to remove the demonstrators. This resulted in a series of clashes near Nalbandian Street and the protesters were eventually removed.

On March 18, protesters handed over a letter to the government demanding that Sargsyan be buried at Yerablur military pantheon. They also demanded a meeting with the assistant to the Prime Minister regarding the matter.

After Yerevan Police Deputy Chief Valeri Osipyan ordered the police to remove the demonstrators, he announced that nobody would be detained and ordered the police to treat the protesters with less force.

A group of demonstrators continued to protest at Yerevan’s Liberty Square on March 20, demanding the dismissal of Armenia’s Prosecutor General Artur Davtyan, and the launch of a criminal case against the investigator who motioned for Sargsyan’s second arrest and the judge who made the a decision to.

Sargsyan died on March 16 after he was hospitalized on the evening of March 15 and did not regain consciousness after an emergency surgery. Sargsyan was arrested in August 2016 for taking food to members of Sasna Tsrer, the armed group who had seized a Yerevan police station. Sargsyan was released in December due to an illness. He was arrested again on Feb. 9 for not reporting to a case hearing after being summoned, and had been on a hunger strike in a prison hospital.

After a petition signed by several Members of Parliament, he was released from prison and immediately taken to a hospital. He decided to leave the hospital, but was admitted again on March 15.

Armenian law-enforcement authorities indicated on March 18 that they might prosecute doctors in connection with Sargyan’s death, reported RFE/RL’s Armenian service. Armenia’s Investigative Committee said it has opened a criminal case under an article of the Criminal Code dealing with negligent homicides resulting from inadequate medical aid. It gave no indications that law-enforcement officers or judges who sanctioned Sargyan’s arrest will also be placed under investigation.




6 Comments on Protests Over ‘The Bringer of Bread’s’ Death Continue; Clashes Erupt

  1. During the occupation of the Sari Tagh police station by Sasna Dzrer, the ARF not only did not attempt to act as an honest mediator between the government and Sasna Dzrer in an attempt to come to an amicable resolution, instead ARF vehemently opposed them and those who were sypathetic to their cause and then with their silence supported their brutal suppression by the police and the mistreatment of Artur Sarkissian, endearingly known as the Carrier of Bread (Hats Danogh@)

    Now the ARF is engaged in its election campaign totally ignoring the turmoil on the street of Yerevan as if they these protests are occuring in a far distant land, unrelated to Armenia.

    I would think that ARF’s conducts have not escaped the attention of many as well.

  2. Garabed, suppose a group of armed fanatics took over a police station in the US, killing police officers in the process. Now suppose you broke through police barriers to bring the armed group some bread (or anything else). What do you think Uncle Sam’s law enforcement bodies will do to you? The poor man that died was a victim of Sasna Dzrer. This is not a family dispute or a street fight. This is politics. I suggest you stop thinking with your emotions.

  3. Noreserunt.

    Interestingly, at this junction in my life, I have stepped into my HinSerunt years, while you are a NorSerunt.

    My concern is for men and women, no less reasonable than I and surely much more patriotic than I, by the mere fact that live and make a living in Armenia and i do not, are compelled to act in the manner they did, than to pass a judgement on their act.

    In his infinite wisdom Uncle Sam also declares in his Declaration of Independence that “But when a long Train of Abuses and Usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a Design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their Right, it is their Duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”

    Were the people given the instruments for peaceful change? You seem to believe they have but I am not so sure, consequently I respectfully disagree with your analogy that what goes with Uncle Sam so goes with the present MotherArmenia.

    • Garabed,

      As a person who’s stepped up into hin serunt, you should think out of the box, really, without bringing up crap such as throwing off the government by peaceful means found in the Declaration of Independence. How many times in the short history of this country have you seen a president being impeached, read: thrown off by using an instrument for peaceful change? Do you really think that it is ever technically possible for the Congress to acquire two-thirds in order to impeach a president? Conversely, how many times in the short history of this country have you seen presidents thrown off by non-peaceful means? Many, if you know whom I mean.

      According to public polls, in 2004, when almost every second American would say “ABB”: Anyone But Bush, the worst president in the history of the United States appeared to stand no chance of being re-elected, that is, thrown off by peaceful means. Yet, he was. But elections in this country are considered an instrument for peaceful change, aren’t they? Then why the majority couldn’t entertain their right to throw off the loathed government of George W. Bush?

      The RoA Constitution also gives the people the right to change their government, but in practice, both the Declaration of Independence and any country’s Constitution are just pieces of paper. The Soviet Constitution, by the way, one of the best constitutions if viewed as a framework document regardless of the system it served to, also promised many good things to the citizens, even the right of the republics to secede. You don’t think the Soviets really thought of giving such right to the republics, do you?

      In short, my point is that governments are the greatest evil in any country, and there is no need to chant praises to one and vilify the other.

  4. Sasna Dzerer wouldn t have happened in the USA because the USA is a country of law ,where the law rules and not the Mafia like in Armenia.It is the fault of the Armenian government which is an authoritarian government run with bribery and corruption and where the courts and the justice department do not exists.The courts in Armenia are nothing but a big theater where there is no law but briberies and corruption.I go along with Garabed about the ARF.The ARF has remained to silent about those demonstrations.The ARF is no longer the champion of Armenian liberty.

    • avatar Norserunt // March 22, 2017 at 5:21 pm //

      Richard, what planet do you live on? Last I checked, the US was one of the most violent and crime ridden countries on earth; government corruption in Washington DC has been of biblical proportions; and American politicians are hated and feared by a great majority of Americans. American officials know that if they stopped spying on their citizens on a 24/7 basis they would be facing a rebellion from all kinds of groups in the country. I suggest you read up on your American history. Every time an American group has risen to demand anything political they have been ruthlessly crushed. I am not even talking about events that took place a long time ago. The fire bombing by police of a black neighborhood in Philadelphia took place in 1985. Waco and Ruby Ridge took place in the 1990s. The Occupy Wall Street movement was crushed only five years ago. The Bundy standoff which resulted in one of the activists getting gunned down by police took place two years ago. Need I mention the hundreds of innocent blacks and hispanics that get gunned down by police every year? Final news flash for you: There are actually large numbers of political prisoners in the US. But because Uncle Sam does not label them as such, in the minds of simpleminded folk, political prisoners don’t exist. I’m afraid, you and Garabed are perfect examples of how politically illiterate and out of touch with reality Armenians can be.

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