Armenia opposition leader Nikol Pashinyan elected Prime Minister by parliament

Saul Bowman
May 9, 2018

They included 13 lawmakers representing Sarkisian's Republican Party of Armenia (HHK).

Armenia's parliament has opened a session to elect a main minister, for which opposition lawmaker and protest chief Nikol Pashinian is the one nominee.

The extraordinary sitting of the Armenian parliament kicked off 12:00 for the second round of vote to elect a Prime Minister.

Later, Pashinyan brought together his ties with the Armenian National Congress and organized his own small and rather marginalized political party "Civil Agreement" which entered Parliament in a political alliance with the "Republic Party of Armenia" lead by former PM Aram Sargsyan and "Bright Armenia" party, making up 8% in Parliament.

Mr Pashinyan, who had begun a protest march to Yerevan ahead of the president's switch to prime minster, arrived in the capital to lead daily protests.

Analyst Vigen Akopyan said snap elections looked certain.

Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland օn behalf of the Council of Europe congratulated Nikol Pashinyan on his election as Prime Minister of Armenia.

"Prime ministers will come and go", he told a rally in Yerevan.

Pashinyan reiterated his intention not to alter Armenia's current foreign policy course, including the country's membership in Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union or keeping Russian military bases on Armenia's territory. "There will be no people with privileged rights in Armenia, everyone will be equal before the law", he stressed. "People want to protest now against the mayor of Yerevan", he said.

She said she hopes Pashinyan will "clean the system" and "protect the people's interests", adding: "There is no need to keep protesting; now we're just going to celebrate". That transfer appeared to make sure Pashinian can be chosen Tuesday.

Pashinian, is a former journalist who edited Armenia's best-selling daily newspaper, "Haykakan Zhamanak", from 1999-2012. "The victory is that you chose who would be prime minister".

As EADaily reported earlier, Serzh Sargsyan resigned on April 23 amidst protest actions against his election.

Pending fresh elections "Pashinyan must manoeuvre between the will of the people and the parliamentary ruling party that he does not belong to and which can not begin supporting him", he said.

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