On Saturday night, the 101 Freeway in Hollywood at Bronson Avenue was blocked from both sides due to a traffic jam caused by Armenian human rights groups. The metropolitan area of Los Angeles consists of the world’s largest population of Armenians after Armenia itself.
The protest started at 9 pm and consisted of at least 100 people. It was taking place on the freeway lanes for an hour and travel was impeded to downtown L.A. The participants were also seen holding Armenian flags.
After the demonstrators were ordered to leave, the northern lane became operational however the southern lane was still blocked partly.
Last week, another protest consisting of over 1000 people was carried out outside the Azerbaijan consulate by the Armenian Youth Federation.
One protestor has been reported to demand an end to aggression against Armenia by Azerbaijan.
The consulate general of Azerbaijan in response stated that they too want peace but it is not possible until Armenia leaves the occupied regions of Azerbaijan. He also stated that the people who have been forced to displace should be allowed to return to their homes.
The demonstration included protestors from Hollywood who were in support of Armenia in its dispute with Azerbaijan over the Nagorno-Karabakh region.
Numerous officers of California Highway Patrol were present at the protest and declared the protest unlawful assembly before instructing the groups to leave.
Nagorno-Karabakh is situated inside Azerbaijan territory, but the ethnic Armenians have control over it. Azerbaijani people want to take control of the area. Many people fear this dispute could lead to a proxy war between Russia and Turkey.
Violence flared up once again last month in the decade long dispute between the two countries. During skirmishes, both sides have accused each other of harming civilians. More than 100 people have died in recent attacks which is the highest number until now.
Even though disputes over this area have been going on since 1991, recently an election was organized by the Armenian government in Karabakh which incited the Azerbaijanis. Following this, several clashes took place between the two countries, however the exact origin of violence is still unknown.
Armenia declared martial law and Azerbaijan has announced a state of war.