New Ruling Coalition Announced

President Serzh Sarkisian and the Country of Law Party's Artur Baghdasarian

YEREVAN (Combined Sources)—President Serzh Sarkisian’s ruling Republican Party of Armenia announced that it has formed a coalition with his current partner the Country of Law Party [Orinats Yerkir], which received the least number of votes in the May 6 elections.

“Based on the May 6, 2012, parliamentary election results; emphasizing the importance of continuing the political cooperation agreement signed on March 21, 2008; focusing attention on resolving the country’s problems through innovative approaches, guarantying Armenia’s steady progress and development… the political parties, represented in the parliament and the undersigned, form a political coalition. The coalition will take responsibility for Armenia’s political, economic and social development,” read a memorandum signed by Sarkisian and Country of Law leader Artur Baghdasarian.

All members of parliament on Wednesday received their parliamentary registration from Armenia’s Central Electoral Commission. The ruling coalition announcement came hours before the distribution of the parliamentary mandates.

The new parliament will convene its new session Thursday.

However, ahead of the session, the Republican Party announced that it has nominated former Parliament Speaker Hovik Abrahamyan, who abruptly left his post to run his party’s election campaign, for the same post.

Absent from the new coalition is the Prosperous Armenia Party, which last week announced that it would not enter ruling coalition, of which it was a junior partner.

Armenia’s former Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian, who joined the Prosperous Armenia Party said that his party will take its assigned parliament seats with the aim of realizing the programs on which the party campaigned.

“The party voiced the need for change in political, economic and social realms during the election campaign. We promised the people and we will be consistent in realizing those programs through our work in the Parliament,” said Oskanian adding Prosperous Armenia will be an alternative to authorities and not an opposition.

Meanwhile, former President Levon Ter-Petrosyan’s Armenian National Congress announced that it will not attend the first session of the new parliament as a sign of protest. The party said that it will, however, be an active force in the legislature.

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