Thousands of opposition supporters rally in Armenian capital

Armenians protest leader's plan to stay in power as prime minister

A motorcade opposing Serzh Sargsyan's nomination for the post of prime minister shut down Vazgen Sargsyan Street for a short time.

We are going to block the building of the National Assembly in four-five directions at 8:15 on Tuesday, Armenian MP Nikol Pashinyan stated during a rally in downtown Yerevan.

About 10,000 people started marching toward parliament early Monday afternoon and were blocked by police using tear gas and stun grenades. Some protesters began to build barricades with trash bins and benches.

Authorities beefed up police presence and put in place cordons which some protesters broke through.

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A shrewd former military officer, Sarkisian has been in charge of the landlocked South Caucasus nation of 2.9 million since winning a presidential vote in 2008. He will operate under a new political system that sees the president's powers weakened and the prime minister taking a dominant role.

The two men are not related.

The RPA will nominate Serzh Sargsyan as candidate for the next Prime Minister.

Tensions in Armenia often flare up during presidential and parliamentary elections.

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