Levon Kocharyan, the son of Armenia’s second President Robert Kocharyan prosecuted in connection with the 2008 post-election events in Yerevan, expressed regret over Monday’s incident involving the ex-president’s supporters and civil activist Vardges Gaspari.
Speaking to the RFE/RL’s Armenian service outside the Yerevan courtroom which hosted the second hearing in the trial of Kocharyan on Tuesday, he said he had not witnessed the incident and had only read some reports about it.
One of the supporters took away the activist’s poster, while another, according to Gaspari, hit him in the face with a bottle after Monday’s hearing in the case, the reporters reminded.
“I am definitely against violence, any kind of violence, but I am also against provocation,” he stressed.
A group of Kocharyan supporters staged a protest outside the court ahead of today’s hearing on Tuesday morning. Shortly afterwards, a group of government supporters launched a separate protest against Kocharyan.
The latter accused the ex-president’s supporters of organizing the campaign in exchange for money.
“We have come here to stand up for the revolution we made. We are here to show that there are citizens against the Kocharyan front,” one of the protesters said.
Meanwhile, the pro-Kocharyan protesters chanted demands for his release, claiming almost nothing has changed in the country after last year’s revolution and falsehoods are widespread in the country.
The demonstrators occasionally traded insults and engaged in disputes.