More than a hundred people gathered in the Armenian capital, Yerevan, on Sunday, calling for their country to leave the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO).
The organization is a Russian-led military alliance that includes several former Soviet countries, including Armenia.
Azerbaijan, a neighbor of Armenia, is not part of the organization.
Protesters argued that the coalition did not do enough to protect their country during the recent fighting with Azerbaijan. They called on Yerevan to get close to the Western powers.
“The United States and Europe are our last hope,” said a woman at the protest. “I am here today because I want us out of the CSTO.
The CSTO has become a useless organization for our country. He doesn’t do anything. It doesn’t help her.”
Another protester said: “This thing called CSTO exists only to defend the interests of Russia.
This organization had to help Armenia during the war, and it did not help.
These calls come after the outbreak of fighting along the Armenia-Azerbaijan border last week.
Shortly after midnight on September 13, Yerevan claimed that Baku had bombed six Armenian settlements within its borders and that this aggression was not justified.
Baku denies the allegations and says its army was responding to Armenian attempts to clear mines at Azeri sites. Yerevan also denied the accusation.
The Collective Security Treaty Organization said it would send a monitoring mission to the area in response to the fighting, which is said to have killed more than 200 soldiers from both sides.
The two countries fought two previous wars over the Nagorno-Karabakh region.
In 2020, a six-week war killed more than 6,500 soldiers. More than 91,000 people were forced to flee the territory to Armenia.
The latest protests come after the US House of Representatives Speaker, Nancy Pelosi, visited the country on a three-day trip. Pelosi is the highest-ranking US official to visit Armenia since the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Illegal attack on Armenia
During her historic visit, she described the fighting as an illegal attack on Armenian territory by her neighbour.
“We strongly condemn these attacks on behalf of Congress, which threaten the prospects for a much-needed peace agreement,” Pelosi said at a news conference.
“Armenia is of particular importance to us because of the focus on security in the wake of an illegal and murderous attack by Azerbaijan on Armenian territory.”
Azerbaijan responded to the accusation, calling it “unfair” and “unacceptable”.
The Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said that “the unjustified and unjust accusations made by Pelosi against Azerbaijan are unacceptable.”
“This is a serious blow to the efforts to normalize relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan.”
Watch Euronews’ report on the player above.