Armenian security forces have been negotiating with a group of armed men who seized a police station in Yerevan. The group is said to have links with an imprisoned opposition leader.
The armed men took over the police station in Yerevan on Sunday morning, according to the country’s National Security Service.
It said the group was “holding hostages under the threat of violence.”
Armenian news agencies said that the group was calling for the release of Jirair Sefilian, an opposition leader and former military commander arrested in June.
Sefilian is an outspoken critic of President Serzh Sargsyan, and has slammed the government’s handling of a long-running conflict between pro-Armenian separatists and the breakaway Azeri region of Narorno-Karabakh.
There were unconfirmed reports that the hostages included the country’s deputy police chief.
The security service accused supporters of the hostage-takers of spreading false internet rumors that an armed uprising against the government was underway, with several other buildings seized.
“The National Security Service officially announces that such information is absolutely untrue,” it said.
It said negotiations were underway to resolve the situation peacefully. Television reports showed pictures of a heavy police presence at the police station.
tj/jm (AFP, Reuters)