People in Armenia Have Spoken

10/12/2018

(The report is compiled from Wikipedia and other sources)

Yesterday the snap parliamentary elections were held in Armenia and the “Velvet Revolution” crossed a major milestone on its path to genuine democracy. But significant tasks remain ahead: the adoption of a new constitution and the establishment of an independent judiciary. On the tortuous road to credible democracy and the rule of law, avoiding personality cults and the cultivation of a loyal opposition will be of paramount importance.

It was the first general election since the start of the “Revolution” in April 2018. A total of 2,573,779 voters were registered to take part in the election. Two alliances and five parties participated in the elections. Turnout was 48.63% (1,260,840 voters), 12 percent lower than in the parliamentary elections in 2017. 32 foreign and 70 local media covered the elections. 22 local and 8 foreign observation missions monitored the process. While noting minor election violations, observers from Armenia and abroad applauded the smooth and transparent nature of the elections.

10/12/2018

(The report is compiled from Wikipedia and other sources)

Yesterday the snap parliamentary elections were held in Armenia and the “Velvet Revolution” crossed a major milestone on its path to genuine democracy. But significant tasks remain ahead: the adoption of a new constitution and the establishment of an independent judiciary. On the tortuous road to credible democracy and the rule of law, avoiding personality cults and the cultivation of a loyal opposition will be of paramount importance.

It was the first general election since the start of the “Revolution” in April 2018. A total of 2,573,779 voters were registered to take part in the election. Two alliances and five parties participated in the elections. Turnout was 48.63% (1,260,840 voters), 12 percent lower than in the parliamentary elections in 2017. 32 foreign and 70 local media covered the elections. 22 local and 8 foreign observation missions monitored the process. While noting minor election violations, observers from Armenia and abroad applauded the smooth and transparent nature of the elections.

The members of the National Assembly (parliament) are elected by party-list proportional representation. Seats are allocated using a threshold of 5% for parties and 7% for multi-party alliances. Three political forces will pass into parliament: My Step Alliance-«Իմ Քայլը» դաշինք led by Nikol Pashinyan (70.43%), Prosperous Armenia-Բարգավաճ Հայաստան of Gagik Tsarukyan (8.27%) and Bright Armenia-Լուսավոր Հայաստան led by Edmon Marukyan (6.37%). The Republican Party-Հանրապետական Կուսակցություն (4.7%) and the Armenian Revolutionary Federation-ՀՅԴ (3.89%) are left out of the National Assembly.

Voters casted their choice for a party at the national level and also gave a preference vote to any of the candidates for the same party in a district list. Seats will be allocated to parties using their national share of the vote, with half awarded to those on the national list and half to those who receive the most preference votes on the district lists. Four seats are reserved for national minorities (Assyrians, Kurds, Russians and Yazidis) with parties having separate lists for the four groups. A gender quota requires at least 25% of a list to be male or female, and nationwide lists can't include more than three consecutive members of the same gender.

Prior to the elections, on 22 October, the government led by Nikol Pashinyan submitted a bill to the National Assembly proposing modifications to the electoral system. These included lowering the thresholds for parties and electoral alliances to 4% and 6%, respectively, minimum representation of four political forces in the parliament (provided the fourth strongest receives at least 2% of the votes), abolishment of open lists of candidates from 13 regional constituencies leaving only nationwide closed lists and introduction of TV debates. The bill sought to raise the minimum representation of each gender from 25% to 30% of the seats on a party list. Most members of the Republican Party (RPA) boycotted the vote. RPA deputy chairman Armen Ashotyan insisted that the electoral system must not be changed less than two months before the elections, as this would amount to "building democracy in the country with undemocratic methods". The government submitted the bill to parliament a second time on 29 October. Once again, the bill failed to receive enough votes, and as a result the election took place according to the old legislation created by the RPA-era government. 

List of participating parties and alliances

Party Leader Political Position     Votes
My Step Alliance «Իմ Քայլը» դաշինք  Nikol Pashinyan Centrist 884,456 70.43
Prosperous Armenia Բարգավաճ Հայաստան Gagik Tsarukyan Centre-right 103,824 8.27
Bright Armenia Լուսավոր Հայաստան  Edmon Marukyan  Centre to centre-right 80,024 6.37
Republican Party Հանրապետական Կուսակցություն Serzh Sargsyan Right 59,059 4.7
Armenian Revolutionary Federation  ՀՅԴ Hrant Markarian Left 48,811 3.89
We Alliance (Free Democrats & Hanrapetutyun) Khachatur Kokobelyan Centre 25,174 2.01
  Aram Sargsyan Centre to centre-right    
Sasna Tsrer Pan-Armenian Party Սասնա ծռեր  Varuzhan Avetisian Right-wing 22,862 1.82
Rule of Law Օրինաց երկիր Artur Baghdasaryan Centre-right 12,389 0.99
Citizen’s Decision Քաղաքացու որոշում Suren Sahakyan Center-left to left  8,530 0.68
Christian-Democratic Rebirth Party Levon Shirinyan Armenian Church morality 6,456 0.51
    & Democratic principles    
National Progress Party Ազգային Առաջընթաց   Centre Right 4,122 0.33
Invalid/blank votes     5,133  
Total     1,260,840 100
Registered voters     2,573,579 48.63

*****

2 comments
  1. Let’s give them time.

    Let's give them time to tackle the country's many problems.

    Don't expect miracles.

    Rome was not built in a day.

    And democracy is messy.  Look at the United States and Europe.

    Interestingly, Armenia is now the only democratic country that is aligned with Russia.  This makes Russia nervous, but it should not.

    Armenia will stay loyal as long as Russia does.

    Remember, Russia is worried because it knows that if it loses Armenia, it loses the Caucasus, the Caspian, and even Central Asia. 

    Armenia needs to realize its value and not be a slave.
     

  2. What new constitution?

    Quote: 'But significant tasks remain ahead: the adoption of a new constitution …'

    Is this based on official statements from government representatives or an opinion of Keghart? It's probable that the electoral code will undergo modifications but that the constitution would be modified, with a referendum and the huge work that it entails, I doubt it! It's only been 3 years that the previous one was accepted and it seems to work well: the country just overcame a major 6 month long governance crisis without bloodshed!

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