Acting Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan in Yerevan, October 22, 2018

Pashinyan Nominated as Candidate for PM

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YEREVAN (RFE/RL) — Armenia’s acting Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan has again been nominated as a candidate for the top government post in a tactical move designed to lead to the dissolution of parliament and holding of snap general elections, Yelk faction leader Lena Nazarian announced on Tuesday, October 30.

The nomination came from two parliamentary factions, including Yelk, and some individual lawmakers, she added.

The pro-government Yelk faction nominated Pashinyan as a candidate also a week ago and then the acting prime minister’s candidacy was voted down in accordance with an apparent political agreement.

Under Armenia’s constitution, snap elections can be called only if the National Assembly fails to elect a prime minister twice within two weeks after the prime minister’s resignation. Pashinyan resigned for tactical reasons on October 16.

For nominations for the second round of voting, however, the signatures of one third of lawmakers are required. Yelk has only nine seats in the 105-member National Assembly, but the Tsarukyan Bloc, which has 31 lawmakers and signed a memorandum with Pashinyan earlier this month to back his push for fresh elections, as well as four lawmakers who earlier quit the former ruling Republican Party’s faction, provided the necessary signatures for the nomination several hours before the deadline.

Pashinyan’s candidacy is expected to be voted down in a ballot scheduled for November 1.

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If that happens the parliament will be dissolved by virtue of law and new general elections will be held in the first half of December.

Pashinyan, who came to power on the wave of anti-government protests last spring and whose political team is tipped to win the likely early parliamentary polls by a landslide, will continue to perform his prime-ministerial duties in the interim.

Topics: Election, Yelk
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