Georgian PM congratulates Armenia's newly elected Prime Minister

Police, protesters clash in Armenia as leader stays in power

Police, anti-govt protesters injured in clashes near Armenian parliament (VIDEO)

The protest erupted after former President Serzh Sargsyan was sworn in as prime minister on Tuesday.

Police used tear gas and stun grenades as they clashed Monday with anti-government protesters in Armenia, leaving several people wounded, after thousands of opposition supporters began to march toward parliament in Yerevan.

Up to 10,000 demonstrators blocked traffic and clashed with police Monday.

He had promised in 2014 that he would "not aspire" to be prime minister if Armenia switched from a presidential to a parliamentary system as a result of the referendum, and Pashinian and other opposition leaders now accuse him of breaking that pledge.

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Anti-government protesters in Armenia have been urged to continue their fight.

"I am declaring a start of a peaceful, velvet revolution in Armenia", opposition MP Nikol Pashinian told protesters in central Yerevan, many of whom were young people with no affiliation to a political party.

Police today temporarily closed the doors of the Municipality, and minor scuffle broke out between the protesters and cops. He is expected to be elected by parliament on Tuesday. Several hundred people sat or laid down on pavements, blocking roads leading to the parliament building and universities.

"No one will prevent us from voting tomorrow for our candidate Serzh Sargsyan", he said.

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The spokesman for the ruling party, Eduard Sharmazanov, has dismissed the protests as "the opposition's artificial and fake agenda".

A shrewd former military officer, Sargsyan has been in charge of the landlocked South Caucasus nation of 2.9 million since winning a presidential vote in 2008.

Sargsyan served as Armenia's president from 2008 until stepping down because of term limits. It was the first presidential election since a 2015 constitutional referendum that was created to shift power in Armenia from the presidency to parliament and, mainly, the prime minister.

As a result, presidential veto powers were stripped from the president and the post was downgraded to a figurehead position elected by parliament every seven years rather than by a direct popular vote.

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