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Tens of thousands of Armenians protested in the capital Yerevan demanding Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan’s resignation because of his proposal to bring peace with neighboring rival Azerbaijan, Politico reported.

Riot police established barriers between protesters and government buildings as more demonstrators poured into the capital over the weekend. On Monday, officials said 88 people were arrested for disobeying police orders and attempting to block streets in Yerevan, Agence France-Pressed noted.

Meanwhile, protest leaders called for new demonstrations on Monday.

The demonstrations were sparked by Pashinyan’s proposal to return four border villages to Azerbaijan, in an effort to foster peace between the two long-time rivals and comply with international law.

However, opposition leaders and citizens – including those in the affected regions – view the move as a capitulation to Azerbaijan and a betrayal of Armenian interests.

Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the two former Soviet republics of Armenia and Azerbaijan have been fighting over the disputed territory of Nagorno-Karabakh – a majority-ethnic Armenian enclave within Azerbaijan.

Armenia gained control over Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding territories after a war in the 1990s, but a 2020 conflict saw Azerbaijan reclaim them.

Following a one-day military operation in September, Baku gained complete control over the region, leading to the displacement of nearly 100,000 ethnic Armenians from Nagorno-Karabakh to Armenia.

On Saturday, foreign ministers from both nations concluded two days of negotiations in Kazakhstan aimed at securing a lasting peace treaty between the two countries. However, both sides released statements acknowledging remaining differences and the need for further negotiations, according to Radio Free Europe.

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