Armenia detains 151 protesters opposed to Azerbaijan land deal


Armenian police said on Monday they had detained dozens of people attempting to block streets in the capital Yerevan as part of protests against government plans to concede land to Azerbaijan.

Armenia has agreed to hand over territory it has controlled since the 1990s and has started border delimitation efforts, in a bid to secure an elusive peace deal with Baku and avoid another bloody conflict.

The territorial concessions have sparked weeks of protests by demonstrators, who have blocked major roads in an attempt to force Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan to change course.

Protest leader Archbishop Bagrat Galstanyan has urged opponents of the deal to flood the streets of Yerevan on Monday in a fresh show of opposition to the deal.

The interior ministry said that a total of 151 people had been detained so far on Monday but that protesters had failed to close off any streets in Yerevan.

An AFP journalist said hundreds of people had joined the demonstration.

Armenia and Azerbaijan, two former Soviet republics in the south Caucasus, have been locked in a stand-off over disputed territory, primarily Nagorno-Karabakh, since the break-up of the Soviet Union.

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