Nikol Pashinyan wins Armenian legislative elections
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan declares victory in the early legislative elections, and his opponent Robert Kocharyan objects to the results accusing them of fraud.
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan declared victory in the early legislative elections after his party came to the fore, according to partial results.
"The Armenian people have given their Civil Contract party the mandate to rule the country," Pashinyan said in a speech live on his Facebook page.
Pashinyan's "Civil Contract" party won about 53.9% of the vote, far ahead of its rival, former President Robert Kocharian, who won 21% of the votes after counting all ballots.
Candidate Robert Kocharian's party, "Revival of Armenia", objected to these partial results, and said in a statement that "there are hundreds of signs from polling stations attesting to planned fraud, stressing that it will not recognize the results until violations are considered."
Votes were cast yesterday, Sunday.
Polling stations opened at 4:00 GMT and for 12 hours, about 2.6 million Armenian voters cast their ballots to choose more than 100 five-year terms in a vote based on proportional representation.
About 20 thousand gathered Friday, June 18, in the center of the Armenian capital, Yerevan, in support of the most prominent opposition candidate, Robert Kocharian.
Crowds of all ages chanted the opposition candidate's name and raised the flags of Armenia, Russia, and the 66-year-old Kocharyan's party, who presided over the former Soviet country from 1998 to 2008.
"We came to solve the problems of security and poverty because the current authority is unable to solve them," Kocharian told the crowd. He called on his supporters to closely monitor the ballots being counted so as not to "steal our votes."
Nikol Pashinyan's government resigned on April 25 and said that he will continue to perform his duties until the date of the early parliamentary elections.