photo by Nazik Armenakian

On May the 21st, 4:15 PM, the Public Information and Need of Knowledge and Women’s Resource Center Armenia NGOs organized a Diversity March in central Yerevan. The march was organized within the scope of the World Day for Cultural Diversity, in order to demonstrate and value cultural, ethnic, human and fauna diversity in Armenia. They had prepared posters about ethnic, racial and fauna diversity, plurality, and cultural diversity.

Before the march misinformation was spread on social networks, declaring that the event had a hidden motive: that, in fact, it was meant to be a gay-parade. In this regard extremist groups had gathered near M. Saryan’s statue, in order to subject the participants of the event to violence, under the pretext of “patriotism”.

Various NGOs, civic initiatives, representatives of international organizations, as well as refugees living in Armenia, people of various social backgrounds and civic activists were taking part in the event. Chanting fascist slogans, namely “zieg heil”, with threats, profanities, calls for violence and violent acts, the extremists did everything to obstruct the march, terrorizing the participants of the peaceful event. Even the presence of the RA Police did not prevent the aggressive and bigot masses from continuing their attacks and actions. In this situation the Police hardly ensured the security of the participants of the march.

We consider that criminal acts have taken place, namely, apparent propaganda of hate on the basis of discrimination which is forbidden under the RA Constitution, calls for violence and threats. We have numerous video-recordings and photographs, more can be find in the mass media. We demand that law-enforcement bodies find and call to responsibility the organizers and participants of the attacks.

Public Information and Need of Knowledge NGO
Women’s Resource Center NGO