Armenia votes to elect new parliament
YEREVAN, DECEMBER 9, ARMENPRESS. Armenia is electing a new parliament.
2010 polling stations across 13 electoral districts throughout the country have opened as of 08:00, December 9.
The vote will be concluded at 20:00, and the ballot count will begin.
Nine political parties and two alliances are running for parliament.
Candidates are – Republican Party of Armenia (HHK), Citizens Decision Social-Democratic Party, ARF, aka Dashnaktsutyun, the ruling My Step Alliance, Lusavor Hayastan (Luminous Armenia) Party, Christian-Democratic Rebirth Party, National Progress Party, Menk (We) Alliance, Orinats Yerkir (Rule of Law, aka Country of Law) Party and Bargavatch Hayastan (Prosperous Armenia) Party.
According to official data, 2,573,779 people are entitled to vote.
Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan tendered a tactical resignation on October 16 in a maneuver to trigger the process of dissolving the parliament.
In accordance to the Constitution, when a Prime Minister resigns the parliament must elect a new PM within two weeks. Lawmakers deliberately failed to elect a new PM as a formality in order to pave the way for dissolution.
Pashinyan took office after massive protests in April forced president-turned PM Serzh Sargsyan to resign. But Sargsyan’s Republican Party (HHK) still held most seats in the 105-seat parliament. Since taking office, Nikol Pashinyan has numerously said that the incumbent parliament doesn’t represent the people and that early elections should take place as soon as possible.
The parliament was dissolved by virtue of law on November 1. On the same day, President of Armenia Armen Sarkissian signed an order on calling early general election on December 9.
The incumbent parliament functions until the new parliament is elected.
The government is formally a caretaker government until a new Cabinet is formed after the election.
The campaigning period kicked off November 26 with 11 political parties and blocs running for parliament.
Edited and translated by Stepan Kocharyan