YEREVAN—In an interview with Tert.am, Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) lawmaker Artsvik Minasyan commented on the possibility of a second round of draft constitutional amendments, saying that the ARF is backing constitutional reforms but on the condition that a parliamentary system be enacted.
“If the concept of a semi-presidential system and its reformation have to be discussed once again, we are not for such an approach,” Minasyan said.
“We insist on a parliamentary system of government and share all the concerns addressed by the president. We have international experience; in many countries, there are systems ensuring government security, reducing instability as well as guaranteeing internal and external security. The parliamentary government does not in any way neglect those problems. On the contrary, we see that developed countries prefer the parliamentary model.”
The ARF is so far the only opposition party to openly support the Sarkisian Administration’s proposed constitutional reforms. Asked whether the president’s refusal to accept a parliamentary system would mean the loss of ARF support, Minasyan reiterated that the party will not back reforms unless the proposed parliamentary model is included.
“Definitely, if the parliamentary form [of government isn’t approved], we will not back such a reform,” Minasyan said. “Our proposals are not restricted to the government model; we have more large-scale proposals in terms of both human rights protections and independence of the judiciary, as well as direct participatory democracy, local government and corporate systems; there are so many proposals. Yes, that’s the central question, but the rest are important for us, too. Even if they are accepted, that doesn’t mean we will be fully content with the proposed scenario, because it is important to address the other questions as well,” he noted.