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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Armenia Talks Urged

WASHINGTON () -- The U.S. State Department is urging Armenia's government and the Dashnak opposition party to start talks to reactivate the party and reopen its newspapers before the May election campaign.

"The suspension of a major political party and its newspapers runs counter to the established principles of democracy and free speech," department spokeswoman Christine Shelly said Wednesday in a statement commenting on recent actions by President Levon Ter-Petrosyan's government.

He suspended the Dashnak party, as the Armenian Revolutionary Federation is known, in December on grounds that a clandestine group called the Dro, run by Dashnak,was "involved in criminal activities, such as political assassination and drug trafficking."