YEREVAN (RFE/RL) — Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and lawmakers representing his My Step alliance spoke out against holding fresh parliamentary elections to resolve the political crisis in Armenia when they met late on Sunday, February 7.
In a short statement, My Step said the participants of the meeting saw no popular “demand” for the conduct of such elections proposed by Pashinyan on December 25. They also noted the proposal’s rejection by the two opposition parties represented in the Armenian parliament, said the statement.
Pashinyan had offered to hold snap elections following opposition protests sparked by the war in Nagorno Karabakh stopped by a Russian-brokered ceasefire on November 10.
Virtually all Armenian opposition groups blame Pashinyan for the Armenian side’s defeat in the war and want him to hand over power to an interim government that would snap elections within a year. The leaders of the two parliamentary opposition parties, Prosperous Armenia (BHK) and Bright Armenia (LHK), insisted on the prime minister’s resignation when they met with him later in December.
Edmon Marukyan, the leader of LHK, warned of more public calls for a violent overthrow of Pashinyan and his government.
“Of course, this is not Bright Armenia’s [preferred] path,” he said. “But that accumulated [anti-government] energy will burst somewhere and the authorities will be primarily responsible for that.”