• Who benefited from the March 1 clashes: authorities or opposition? (video)

    Chairman of the Armenian Constitutional Court spoke about the tragic events of March 2008 for the first time yesterday in Gyumri city, where he was invited to deliver a lecture.

    “We were also unable to take developments along a path that would exclude bloodshed and avert the March 1 tragedy,” Gagik Harutyunyan said. In his speech, he said March 1 was an outburst of accumulated social conflicts. The CC Chairman also spoke about the October 1999 parliamentary carnage, which led to the March 1 events.

    “We should not forget that October 27, 1999, was another act of terrorism, manifestation of accumulated social grease conflicts,” he said.

    After the lecture, Mr Harutyunyan answered A1+’s questions. However, he did not agree that by considering ‘October 27, 1999 another act of terrorism’ he gave the same characterization to March 1, 2008.

    “I used the word ‘terrorism’ to describe the events of October 27, please do not mix places,” he said adding that he meant on the October 27, 1999 terrorist attack on the Armenian Parliament.

    Mr Harutyunyan knows the weight of his words and how they are perceived by the public; he is very sophisticated and would not like to speak about March 1 openly. “”Let us simply leave everything in the context that I used,” he said.

    However, the Constitutional Court Chairman warned us that we should not separate Armenia from the countries that shifted from a semi-presidential system to another form of government in the result of ‘colour revolutions.’

    We should learn a lesson from the fact that social contradictions in our country have reached such a level that Armenians shed one another’s blood. Gagik Harutyunyan remarks that it could have been even worse.

    The CC Chairman declined to reply the question, “Who actually won after the March 1 clashes – authorities or opposition?”

    “We shall still have an opportunity to speak about it,” he said.

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