Armenia PM warns of coup, as army demands he quit

Armenia's prime minister is calling for his supporters to rally for him, and is warning of an attempted military coup, after the army demanded his resignation.

Protests and counter-protests appeared in the capital shortly afterwards on Thursday (February 25).

It's not immediately clear if if the army is willing to use force to make Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan resign, along with the rest of his administration, or whether it was just talk.

But the leader has faced calls to quit for months over his handling of the devastating military conflict it fought with Azerbaijan last year, and the army in a written statement said, quote, "the serious mistakes in foreign policy have put the country on the brink of collapse."

Thousands of people are believed to have died in the fighting with Azerbaijan, where ethnic Armenians lost huge areas of territory to Azeri forces.

Thursday's development has also alarmed Russia, which has a military base in Armenia, and has peacekeepers watching the region.

It's calling for calm and for Armenians to work within their constitution. Turkey, which supported Azerbaijan during the conflict, is also condemning the move.

The Turkish government says coups are unacceptable, no matter where they take place.

Video Transcript

[CROWD CHANTING]

Armenia's prime minister is calling for his supporters to rally for him and is warning of an attempted military coup after the army demanded his resignation. Protests and counter-protests appeared in the capital shortly afterwards on Thursday. It's not immediately clear if the army is willing to use force to make Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan resign, along with the rest of his administration, or whether it was just talk.

But the leader has faced calls to quit for months over his handling of the devastating military conflict it fought with Azerbaijan last year. And the army, in a written statement said, quote, "the serious mistakes in foreign policy have put the country on the brink of collapse." Thousands of people are believed to have died in the fighting with Azerbaijan, where ethnic Armenians lost huge areas of territory to Azeri forces.

Thursday's development has also alarmed Russia, which has a military base in Armenia and has peacekeepers watching the region. It's calling for calm, and for Armenians to work within their constitution. Turkey, which supported Azerbaijan during the conflict, is condemning the move, as well. Turkish government says coups are unacceptable, no matter where they take place.