Top General to Run for Parliament On Dashnak Ticket

YEREVAN (RFE/RL)–A top army general confirmed on Thursday reports that he will resign as Armenia’s deputy defense minister to run for parliament on the ticket of the governing Armenian Revolutionary Federation. "I will soon submit a written application to the minister," Lieutenant-General Artur Aghabekian told reporters. "I have already made a verbal request and it was granted. The minister will then ask the president of the republic to demobilize me from the armed forces." Aghabekian, who is widely regarded as Defense Minister Serzh Sarkisian’s right-hand man, admitted that he will rejoin Dashnaktsutyun, a junior partner in Armenia’s ruling coalition. "I am returning to the ran’s of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation for the time being," he said. "The party will then decide whether or not I should run for parliament." ARF Bureau chairman Hrant Markarian said his party welcomes Aghabekian’s decision and will include him on its list of candidates for the upcoming parliamentary elections.

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