Hayk Khanumyan, the head of the opposition National Rebirth faction in the Nagorno Karabakh Republic’s National Assembly and chairman of the party, has been beaten up and was hospitalized in capital Stepanakert.
The National Assembly has passed the new Electoral Code in the third and final reading today, with Chief of Government Staff David Harutyunyan admitting that there is still no broad consensus with the opposition on the set of electoral laws yet.
Armenia’s amended Constitution scraps the hitherto applied mixed system of electoral voting and parliamentary representation and replaces it with an all-proportional one, but debate over whether elements of the majoritarian system should be retained in the elections appears to continue in the country’s political circles.
Hrazdan’s mayor Aram Danielyan representing the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (RPA) has been reelected in a Sunday vote that opposition members and observers claim was held in condition of numerous violations.
Armenia’s opposition groups reacted mostly with skepticism to Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamyan’s “revolutionary” call for speedy reforms in various spheres of Armenia’s political and public life, casting doubts that rhetoric will be followed by real action.
The discussions over the draft Electoral Code held among government, opposition and civil society representatives in the so-called 4+4+4 format, according to opposition members, ended without results. The opposition Armenian National Congress (ANC) party stated at the National Assembly on Monday that it suspended its participation in further discussions.
A new initiative in Armenia called “Citizens Concerned with Disasters Threatening Armenia” is collecting signatures for a petition demanding that the authorities of Armenia give up cooperation with Russia and deepen their ties with European institutions.
Given the absence of large-scale fraud, a large number of votes of defeated candidate Sasun Mikaelyan, the Hrazdan mayor elections, were a step forward, Lernik Alexanyan, an MP from the Republican Party of Armenia (RPA), told media.
This week, Alan Meale and Giuseppe Galati, co-rapporteurs on Armenia of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) Monitoring Committee, during their visit to the country, met the President, Prime Minister and a number of senior officials to discuss Armenia’s democratic and legislative development processes, as well as issues linked with the April four-day war in Nagorno Karabakh.
A new political party being set up by Vartan Oskanian, a former foreign minister critical of Armenia’s current government, will be called Hamakhmbum (Consolidation), it emerged today.
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