Battle lines drawn as Armenian opposition defies parliament and calls for transport blockade of country

Battle lines drawn as Armenian opposition defies parliament and calls for transport blockade of country
By Robert Hackwill
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With the ruling party-dominated parliament and the opposition clashing head-on, there appears no prospect of an early resolution to the poitical crisis.

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Stalemate and standoff in Armenia, where the opposition is blockading parliament after the ruling party ensured it would not back the opposition's leader for the prime minister's job.

Constitutionally parliament is obliged to try again next week, but in the meantime pressure on the government is being maintained, with opposition parties fanning out in the capital Yerevan to take control of key locations.

A general strike and campaign of civil disobeduience has been called for by the man who wants to become prime minister, Nikol Pashinyan, who insists he is the peoples' choice.

The crisis has been growing since early April, when the president of the last 10 years, prevented from running again because of term limits, moved sideways into the PM's office. The opposition immediately mobilised, saying it was a bid to hold onto power indefinitely and was an abuse of the constitution.

On Tuesday night Pashinyan went further, calling for a transport blockade of the entire country.

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