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Ex-President Kocharyan Charged with "Usurping State Power" on March 1-2, 2008

Today, Armenia’s Special Investigative Service (SIS) announced that Armenia’s second president Robert Kocharyan has been charged with a criminal offense on the basis of sufficient evidence obtained during the preliminary investigation on the criminal case on the events that took place in Yerevan from March 1-2, 2008.

Kocharyan is accused of violating Article 300.1 of the Armenian Criminal Code (Usurping state power, i.e. seizure of state power, in violation of the Constitution of the Republic of Armenia, or keeping it with violence, as well as, actions aimed at the overthrowing of constitutional order of the Republic of Armenia, or the violent breach of territorial integrity of the Republic of Armenia, is punished with imprisonment for the term of 10 to 15 years).

A motion has been filed with a Yerevan Court to detent Kocharyan.

Note to Readers: Thousands in Yerevan took to the streets in February 2008 after the Central Electoral Commission declared Serzh Sargsyan the winner of the February 18 presidential election.

Combined units of the police and army attacked the protesters on March 1. Eight civilians and two police officers died in the melee.