Three Armenian Service journalists were attacked by a large group of plainclothes men late on July 29, while they were covering clashes between riot police and protesters marching in support of armed gunmen who have occupied a police compound in Yerevan for the past two weeks.
Karlen Aslanian, Hovannes Movsisian, and Garik Harutiunian were attacked and beaten up by men armed with sticks and metal bars as they retreated towards downtown Yerevan. The men, who appeared to be police officers, were clearly aware that they were assaulting reporters.
“Are you filming?” one of them said before punching Movsisian, smashing his camera and tearing off his ID badge.
“I told them that I stopped filming but they kept hitting me,” Movsisian said by phone as he ran for safety and took cover in a local shop shortly before midnight.
“They are chasing us and trying to arrest everyone in sight,” he said, adding that he witnessed dozens of protesters injured and detained at the scene.
The two other RFE/RL reporters were also injured before fleeing to safety through another Sari Tagh street.