Time in Yerevan: 11:07:36,   20 September

ARF faction secretary says PM Sargsyan, opposition MP Pashinyan would be able to reach concrete agreement without presence of reporters

YEREVAN, APRIL 22, ARMENPRESS. Dialogue and negotiation couldn’t take place in the presence of reporters, ARF faction secretary Aghvan Vardanyan told Armenpress, commenting on the April 22 meeting of Prime Minister of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan and opposition MP Nikol Pashinyan.

Aghvan Vardanyan said PM Serzh Sargsyan and MP Nikol Pashinyan maybe could find mechanisms to get out of the current situation.

“I think dialogue and negotiation couldn’t take place in the presence of mass media. It would be much better for the sides to reach a concrete agreement and be able to sit in front of each other and looking at each other to talk about the current issues. In that case it would be possible to find solutions. It’s obvious that it is impossible to hold talks live in the presence of reporters”, Aghvan Vardanyan said, adding that despite this the situation still remains tense.

He expressed hope that the PM and the MP will be ready to find mechanisms to give such solutions which will benefit both the country and the people.

The meeting between Armenia’s Prime Minister and opposition MP Nikol Pashinyan, leader of the ongoing demonstrations, launched on April 22 in the Marriott Hotel in Republic Square of Yerevan, the main rally site where every evening demonstrators gather to protest.

The meeting lasted only a few minutes.

The meeting was held in the presence of numerous reporters who were broadcasting live.

“I am happy that you responded to my numerous calls to talk. Although I don’t quite imagine how long we can negotiate in the presence of dozens of reporters, nevertheless I am happy”, the Prime Minister said at the beginning.

MP Nikol Pashinyan responded by saying that there is a misunderstanding and that he has come to discuss the PM’s resignation and peaceful transfer of power, rather than for dialogue.

“That’s not negotiations, that’s not a dialogue. That is simply an ultimatum, blackmailing the state and legitimate authorities. You do not realize the degree of responsibility, you didn’t learn lessons from March 1 [2008]. And if we have to speak in that tone, then I am only left to once again advice you to return to the legal area and overall the limits of reasonable actions. Otherwise the entire responsibility falls on you,” Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan said.

Pashinyan reacted by saying that the situation in Armenia has changed and the power has transitioned to the people.

“A 7-8% parliamentary faction doesn’t have the right to speak on behalf of the people. And I don’t want to continue this conversation with you anymore. If you do not accept the lawful demand of the state, goodbye,” PM Sargsyan said and walked out on the opposition lawmaker.

Before departing, the Prime Minister addressed reporters, saying: “Dear reporters, you yourselves can make conclusions”.

English translator/editor – Aneta Harutyunyan

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