An urgent appeal to all Armenians in the diaspora and friends
As you have all been following the news and developments in Armenia, forced measures were taken to elect Serj Sargsyan as prime minister on 17th of April, 2018, surrounded by barb wires and heavy police presence despite the growing national uprising of thousands of peaceful protesters against him and his corrupt and oligarchic regime.
Since then the numbers of peaceful protesters joining the nation-wide civil disobedience declared by opposition leader Nikol Pashinyan and a group of civil society activists are growing each day, and merely in the Republic Square of Yerevan those are more than 60,000. The protests that started in Yerevan have expanded to reach all the regions and most populated cities of Armenia and many more are joining each day. Students and young people have taken the initiative to raise their voices, closing streets, marching non-stop to fight for their freedoms and right for a better Armenian free of oligarchs, injustice and corruption. Their main concern is that the third and likely the life-long term of S.Sargsyan as the leader of the country would leave Armenia in the enduring catch of dictatorship.
Now is the moment to join in support of the incredible change that is happening in Armenia. People need your support in the diaspora to be able to fight this regime and restore democratic processes without violence and bloodshed.
Recently, Serj Sargsyan met with opposition leader Pashinyan in front of the media to negotiate. But he clearly refused to resign, which is one of the conditions put forward by protesters. Moreover, Sargsyan mentioned March 1, 2008 by which he implied to threaten the peaceful population that his regime is ready to use once more violence and brutal force to stop the uprising and to keep the power.
For the past 10 days, many thousands of people are on the streets peacefully protesting against the corrupt regime. More than 850 have been detained or arrested illegally. Police is using disproportionate force against citizens, beating and detaining even minors, spreading fear and threats. Oligarchic members of the Republican Party of Armenia supporting Serj Sargsyan are sending their groups of thugs to beat people on the streets and commit acts of vandalism, creating an atmosphere of fear and chaos. On April 21 and 22, police started arrests of the organizers of peaceful rallies, also detaining Nikol Pashinyan and two other MPs, members of the Civic Contract, who have an immunity according to the Armenian Constitution. While the peaceful civic disobedience is growing in scope and intensity, S.Sargsyan’s regime represses demonstrations with increasing brutal force of police and use of organized criminals.
Your support is crucial at this time and can help prevent violent attacks against peaceful protesters using civil disobedience as a mean to reach their goals. All of us in Armenia fighting for a democratic country and for justice are urging all members of the diaspora in different countries to
- join the struggle by holding solidarity protests in front of Armenian embassies in your countries;
- write letters to the president of Armenia;
- inform and mobilize the international community;
- engage the diasporan public figures;
- initiate other peaceful actions that can support people’s struggle on the ground.
We can prevent violence together and Armenia needs you right now!
The free and independent citizens of Armenia need you in their struggle for democracy!
Civil society organizations (open to more signatures)
- 1. Women’s Resource Center NGO
2. Analytical Center for Globalization and Regional Cooperation NGO
3. Transparency International Anticorruption Center NGO
4. “Armenian Program of Innocence” NGO
5. Martuni Women’s Community Council NGO
6. “We” Youth NGO
7. “Youth For Change” Civil Society Development NGO
8. Ijevan Civic Youth Center NGO
9. Power of Right NGO
10. Helsinki Association human rights NGO
11. Public Journalism Club
12. “Lore” Ecoclub NGO
13. Urban Foundation
14. Real World, Real People Social NGO
15. “Veles” NGO
16. GALA TV
17. Non-discrimination and Equality Coalition
18. Human Rights House Yerevan
19. Women’s Support Center NGO
20. Tufenkain Foundation
21. Territorial Development and Research Center NGO
22. Peace Dialogue NGO
23. “Colorful House” Social-cultural and Human Rights Defender NGO
24. World Vision Armenia
25. Sose Women Issues NGO
26. Meghri Women’s Resource Centre NGO