Kocharian Tells Security Agencies Stability, Rule of Law Crucial During Elections

YEREVAN (Armenpress)–"Stability is one of our most significant achievemen’s; our success is built on stability and with this regard there is no room for faltering," Armenian President Robert Kocharian said Friday during a meeting with heads of Armenia’s security and law enforcement agencies.
"It is very important that security in the country does not deteriorate," Kocharian said during his meeting with heads of Armenia’s National Security Agency and Police Agency as well as the Attorney General, Provincial Prosecutors, and the head of the Yerevan Police Agency Friday.
"The pre-election process is entering a crucial stage," the President told the heads. "Our objective is to hold legitimate elections and with that regard your departmen’s’ and personally your roles are significant."
"No one should think that the election period could be taken advantage of. It is also very important that any candidate or political force does not consider turning the elections in an uncontrollable process through some kind of provocation."
Some candidates and political forces are trying to drag the security forces of the country into the political process, according to the President. Public accusations and provocations are sometimes made, he noted, but it is important for everyone to know that the law enforcement bodies and government structures as a whole are carrying out their obligations in a decent, efficient and resolute manner.
"In this period of time, all of us, including the candidates and political forces, should be much more tolerant," he said. "When the situation is tense, when accusations are exchanged, and when there is a candidate whose entire campaign is a chain of provocations, the temptation to respond and react is great."
Kocharian divided the issues facing Armenia’s law enforcement agencies during the pre-election period into two categories.
The first group, according to the President, must include dealing with issues related to the activities carried out by the law enforcement agencies in conformity with the Electoral Code. The responsibility of the Police is to verify the voter lists, he said.
The second group of issues must deal with discipline, as well as the maintenance of the public order on election day, especially in the vicinity of the precincts, he said.
A specialized hotline has been created by the police to address complaints of violations of the electoral code, Kocharian said and the law enforcement bodies, he explained, have to respond swiftly to all the signals related to the violation of the Electoral Code.

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