April 23 (UPI) — Armenian Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan resigned Monday, after being in the post for just six days.
Sargsyan, appointed prime minister April 17 after his 10 years as president ended, was a close ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Thousands of demonstrators in the capital, Yerevan, had accused Sargsyan of corruption and authoritarian rule — and his resignation followed news that opposition leader Nikol Pashinyan was freed by police after his one-day detention.
Pashinyan, a parliament member and organizer of the protests, was taken by police to an unknown location during Sunday’s demonstrations, in which two other opposition leaders and at least 200 protesters were detained by police.
In a resignation statement, Sargysan said, “Nikol Pashinyan was right. I was wrong. This situation requires solutions, but I won’t participate in them. I leave the post of this country’s prime minister. The movement on the streets is against my office. I will fulfill your claim.”
Armenia, a small country in the Caucasus region straddling Europe and Asia, is a former Soviet republic bounded by Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Iran.