One person was arrested and an officer was injured after a peaceful protest turned violent at the Azerbaijan Consulate in Brentwood on Tuesday, the Los Angeles Police Department said.
The protest, organized by the Armenian National Committee of America, Western Region, started about 2 p.m. with hundreds of Armenian American protesters marching to the consulate near the 11700 block of Wilshire Boulevard.
Video shows the group chanting “Armenians demand justice” and “Justice for Tavush.” They were protesting against a violence in Tavush, a northern province of Armenia near the border of Azerbaijan.
It’s unclear how the violence started, but it appears that the group clashed with a smaller group of counterprotesters at the consulate, according to protesters and the LAPD. Video shows small groups fistfighting and pushing one another on the streets.
“I think this is something that shouldn’t happen in Los Angeles,” L.A. Consul General of Azerbaijan Nasimi Aghayev told NBC News. “Every side should be able to peacefully express their opinion and offer their side of the story.”
LAPD Capt. Randy Goddard told the news outlet that a detective who tried to stop a fight was punched in the eye and will require stitches.
As a result, one person was arrested on suspicion of battery on a police officer.
“Ultimately, the crowd wasn’t listening to their facilitators and came across the street to try to instigate with the counterprotesters,” he said.