Pashinyan warns Republican Party planning to sabotage Prime Minister election

02 May, 2018, 01:49 | Author: Charlene Valdez
  • Post-Vote Pashinyan Calls for “Total” Civil Disobedience

Armenian protest leader Nikol Pashinyan has called on his supporters to launch a nationwide campaign of civil disobedience, after the ruling party blocked his bid in parliament to become the country's prime minister.

Organizer of protests in Armenia, the head of fraction "EFC" Nikol Pashinian officially approved as a candidate for the post of Prime Minister.

Eduard Sharmazanov, a member of the board of the Republican Party of Armenia and the vice speaker of the parliament, that the party's faction will make its decision only after it hear Pashinyan's program.

Armenian opposition leader Nikol Pashinyan gestures to his supporters at a rally in Yerevan, Armenia April 30, 2018.

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However, a spokesman for the Republican Party, Eduard Sharmazanov said earlier that should three opposition's factions support Pashinyan's nomination the RPA would not stonewall the election.

But Pashinyan is still six votes short of the 53 he needs from the 105-seat legislature, where the Republican Party has a majority.

Opponents of Sarkisian launched the protests, which brought thousands of Armenians out into the streets, saying the new system would have allowed pro-Moscow Sarkisian to remain the former Soviet republic's leader indefinitely.

Between 30,000 and 40,000 opposition supporters spent the day peacefully rallying outside the parliament building to support Pashinyan.

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"It showed once again that they don't care about us, about the ordinary people", said Gurgen, a 61-year-old unemployed man who was among the crowd.

On April 23, Serzh Sargsyan, who was appointed by the Armenian parliament as prime minister amid widespread disaffection for him, resigned under the pressure of mass protests against his premiership.

Party officials said over the weekend that Republican lawmakers would vote as a bloc, leaving uncertain prospects for Pashinian. Some voters accuse Sarksyan and his associates of cronyism and corruption, an allegation they deny.

During debate, Republican lawmakers accused Pashinyan of being an irresponsible rabble-rouser and of lacking qualities to command the Armenian armed forces.

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