New Code to Govern Karabakh Elections

STEPANAKERT (Noyan Tapan)–The forthcoming parliamentary elections in Karabakh will be held in accordance with a new election code adopted by the Nagorno Karabakh Republic National Assembly March 15. Two bills "On the elections of Karabakh Parliament members" were submitted to the Parliament for consideration: one stipulated the combination of the proportional and majority election systems; whereas the other provided for only the majority system. The latter was approved by majority.

Commenting on the results of the voting–Chairman of the Standing Committee for State and Legal Affairs Ashot Sargssian–who had submitted the first bill for consideration–pointed out that the difference between the two versions is not considerable–but of a principal character. According to him–the proportional election system allows the parties to take an active part in the social and political life of the country. "If the parties are deprived of the right to participate in the elections–the democratic processes will be delayed for another five years," Sargssian said. The Parliament found the argumen’s of supporters of the majority election system groundless–as proper parties are not completely formed. According to Sargssian–"the point is not whether or not the parties have completely formed–but is to go a step forward from the preceding election code."

The new law gran’s public and political parties the right to directly participate in the elections and nominate their candidates for elections. For a candidate to be registered–signatures of 200 supporters are to be presented to the Central Electoral Commission.

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