Opposition leader suspends nationwide protests

Opposition leader suspends nationwide protests

Armenian opposition leader Nikol Pashinyan has suspended nationwide protests after the governing Republican Party indicated it would support his bid to be interim prime minister, BBC reports.

The demonstrations brought much of Armenia to a standstill on Wednesday. Mr Pashinyan told supporters that the party's position needed clarifying but protests would be suspended for a day.

Republicans blocked Mr Pashinyan's bid to become prime minister in a parliamentary vote on Tuesday. In a statement on Wednesday, the party did not mention Mr Pashinyan by name but said they would back a candidate nominated by a third of MPs at next week's vote in parliament. It said it would not put forward its own candidate, leaving Mr Pashinyan as the only nominee.

"The issue has practically been solved," Mr Pashinyan told tens of thousands of supporters gathered in the capital, Yerevan. "All factions said they would support my candidacy... We are suspending protests and going to have a rest."