ARF of Lebanon Issues Release on Election

BEIRUT (Aztag)–The Armenian Revolutionary Federation Central Committee of Lebanon issued an announcement Saturday regarding the upcoming parliamentary elections scheduled to take place at the end of the month across the country.

This announcement came in response to several media reports and press articles–which have been issuing reports without properly checking the facts and–in that way–attempting to create schism within the community–which has been urged to vote for the ARF and Hunchakian-led United Armenian Bloc.

The announcement refutes accusations that the ARF unilaterally produced the United Armenian Bloc slate.

"The ARF spared nothing to maintain unity and to participate in the election as united bloc–in order to counter every effort to divide the Armenian community," the announcement stressed.

The ARF statement specifically pointed to the Armenian Democratic League (Ramkavar party)–which pulled itself from the united front–by naming Hagop Kassardjian as the party’s candidate–despite opposition from both the ARF and Hunchakian parties–which in coordination with religious and lay leaders devised the electoral slate.

"For the last time we [the ARF] declare that the decision on the United Armenian Bloc slate occurred with the Social Democratic Hunchakian party and the slate enjoys the support of leaders of the three Armenian religious denominations. This step was heeding the call by His Holiness Aram I–Catholicos of the Holy See of Cilicia–who urged [the community] to maintain Armenian unity and not allow outside forces to interfere in the community’s internal issues–as well as to avoid instances where individuals with personal gains utilize national interests," the announcement stressed.

On Friday–the Hunchakian party issued an announcement refuting reports that party member and United Armenian Bloc candidate Mihran Seferian was arrested and his candidacy annulled.

The Hunchakian party’s Lebanon Governing Body asserted that Seferian remains a candidate in the United Armenian Bloc slate.

In other developmen’s–candidate Mkrtich Bouldoukian–an economist who is a deputy director of the Lebanese Central Bank–announced that he was pulling his candidacy from the race and endorsing the United Armenian Bloc.

"I will do my utmost to ensure that the United Armenian Bloc slate of candidates are successful in their campaigns," Bouldoukian said.

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