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YEREVAN. - Shahen Harutyunyan, the son of nationalist Tseghakron party leader and political prisoner Shant Harutyunyan convicted to 6 years of imprisonment, invaded the pitch during the match today wishing to express his protest over political prisoners in Armenia, Shahen Harutyunyan told Armenian News – NEWS.am after being released.  

“I invaded this very pitch, since one of the best football players was on the field and the world’s attention was focused on him. I took advantage of the occasion to once again show the world that Armenia has political prisoners and we demand to set them free,” Shahen Harutyunyan said.

Among those waiting for Shahen in front of the police station were MP Nikol Pashinyan, ‘Barev Yerevan’ faction member David Sanasaryan, his mother and friends. They met Shahen with applauses, saying he was the hero of the day.

Shahen Harutyunyan invaded the pitch at the end of the first-half of the European Championship qualifier Armenia-Portugal. He appeared on the field wearing a T-shirt with his father’s picture and carrying a banner reading ‘Freedom for Shant Harutyunyan and other political prisoners.’ The police soon managed to remove him from the field.

It’s already several days since his father, Shant Harutyunyan, has gone on hunger strike in his place of detention. He requires removing him to a separate ward, since he has concerns that his life is threatened. 

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