Pension reform protest: Armenian civic group conducts bike race

 

The Armenian civic group, conducts active protests against the compulsory pension funds, launched Saturday morning a bicycle race downtown Yerevan.
For what was thought to be an awareness campaign, scores of bicycle riders gathered in Liberty Square to voice alarm over the controversial pension reforms.
Speaking to reporters, one of the protesting activists, Tigran Martirosyan, said their previous bicycle ride had proven the effectiveness of that form of campaign.
The amended pension law, which went into effect on January 1, requires that all the employed citizens of Armenia born after 1973 make monthly contributions to pension funds in the amount of 5%-10% of their salaries. The measure met strong protests by the society, with many expressing distrust in the system. On January 24, the Constitutional Court issued a ruling to suspend the mandatory component of the law. A final ruling is due later this month.

“Our purpose is to make the population maximum aware of this law. We now have an awareness problem, with many not knowing what it really is,” said Tigran Hovhannisyan, another activist.

The group will distribute leaflets among passers-by in the streets to inform them of plans for a March 22 rally.

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