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Armenia Crisis: Opposition Leader Pashinyan Officially Nominated For Prime Minister

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Armenia Crisis: Opposition Leader Pashinyan Officially Nominated For Prime Minister

Gleb Garanich/Reuters

Armenian opposition leader Nikol Pashinyan was officially nominated by the Way Out Alliance (Yelq) party’s parliamentarygroup as a candidate for the post of the Prime Minister, a member of the faction Ararat Mirzoyan told on April 30, the state-run news agency Armenia News reported.

On April 30, Pashinyan came to the Parliament to discuss with the National Assembly (NA) the May 1 parliament election. He met with the deputies from opposition Yelk faction, the talks resulted in the Pashinyan’s nomination:

“The group proposed Pashinyan’s candidacy for the post of prime minister, and today Yelq will hold meetings with the other three factions of the parliament, including the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (RPA),” Mirzoyan stated.

The Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) Dashnaktsutyun Party’s NA faction proposed all parliamentary factions to nominate Pashinyan as the single candidate for PM.

The opposition leader also talked with the Prosperous Armenia party (second in the Parliament), headed by businessman Gagik Tsarukyan.

“We have decided to support Nikol Pashinyan as a candidate for Prime Minister”, head of Tsarukyan faction Naira Zohrabyan stated.

Pashinyan commented the negotiations with the Prosperous Armenia party in a good spirit:

“We will have discussions with political forces, about the mechanisms for the [respective] time frames. (…). We have taken necessary steps to organize truly democratic and fair elections [in Armenia].”

The ruling Republican Party of Armenia (RPA) decided not to field a candidate. The RPA faction head Vahram Baghdasaryan noted that if the other three political forces represented in the parliament nominate a single candidate, their faction would not get in the way of Armenia having a new PM on May 1.

The RPA, Tsarukyan, Way Out, and ARF factions have 58, 31, 9 and 7 seats, respectively, in parliament. At least 53 votes are needed to elect the new Prime Minister of Armenia.

In the interview with Belarus ONT TV channel Armenian President Armen Sarkissian said that the current situation in Armenia can be resolved only within the Constitution:

“All of us must respect the Constitution. And the Constitution clearly says – there is only one high level – the parliament – where the country’s Prime Minister must be elected. Not on the streets, not during rallies or in any other building, all disagreements must be settled in the parliament building. Whoever gets elected Prime Minister, I, as head of state, will sign the order on appointing the given person as Prime Minister, if of course no violations of constitution happen in the election process.”

Giving the interview to the Armenia News, Pashinyan stressed that, he is confident to be able to dismantle the current defective system in Armenia:

“If you mean corruption and the other negative phenomena, then yes. I’m convinced that I will be able to.

“Since there is a matter of time, we must start—from the first day—the formation of guarantees for holding free, fair elections”, Pashinyan emphasized.

According to Pashinyan’s statement, all streets in capital city Yerevan shall be closed off on May 1, when the NA will elect the new Prime Minister of Armenia.

On April 23, Prime Minister Sargsyan resigned amid anti-government protests. Armenian First Deputy Prime Minister Karen Karapetyan became acting Prime Minister. Rallies continued as the opposition demanded an interim Prime Minister, who would not be from the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (RPA). The RPA strongly opposed opposition’s demands.

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  • Goodoldinandout

    Vaya con Dios Armenia!

  • Feudalism Victory

    Is there a bad guy here? I cant decipher the sides here.

    • SnowCatzor

      Not from what I’ve seen, at least not in a geopolitical sense. This isn’t some bogus ‘color revolution’ like Ukraine, just a lot of people pissed-off at their government’s corruption.

      • EoF

        Thank god. I was getting scared.

  • Arevordi

    Russian-Armenian relations go back more than two hundred years. Armenia as a nation-state exists because of Russia. Nothing and no one will drive a wedge between Russia and Armenia, and a vast majority of Armenians continue to be pro-Russian. While Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan was more-or-less put into power by Western interests operating throughout Armenian society, after coming to power he quickly recognized that Armenia cannot survive without Russia. Small, impoverished, landlocked and surrounded by Turkic predators, Armenia is located in one of the most hostile geopolitical zones in the world. Therefore, no Russia in Armenia would mean no Armenia in the South Caucasus. Period. Anyone that does not understand this is either an agent of the West or an ignorant moron. Conversely, Armenia serves as a very important strategic foothold for the Russian state. Without Armenia, Russia’s vulnerable underbelly, the strategic Caucasus, could collapse to Turkic/Islamic hordes. Russia and Armenia therefore need each other. Russia will never allow Armenia to fall. So, Nikol Pashinyan may be an agent of the West but he is no moron and he surely does not have a death-wish either. He therefore has no choice but to stay as close to the Russian Bear as possible. But, he is now in a serious bind with his benefactors in the West. In a nutshell: He is being expected to deliver, so to speak. However, he will not meet their expectations. And this brings to mind Margaret Thatcher’s famous quip: Those who stand in the middle of the road run the risk of getting run over. Lets see who is going to run over Nikol Pashinyan…