STEPANAKERT, YEREVAN—Bako Sahakian was re-elected for a second five-year term as President of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, announced the country’s Central Electoral Commission on Friday.
According to the CEC, Sahakian received 66.7 percent of the votes, while his main opponent, Parliament Member Vitaly Balassanian received 32.5 percent of the votes during Thursday’s vote.
Voters in the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic came out in droves on Thursday to take part in the fifth presidential elections of the country. According to Karabakh’s Central Electoral Commission, more than 73 percent of registered voters turned out by the time polls had closed at 8 p.m. local time.
Some 110 international observers converged on the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic to monitor the vote, including observers from Armenia, former Soviet republics, the EU and the US. The Western observers were there on behalf of NGOs and did not represent any government.
One of the American observers was former Rhode Island Attorney General Patrick C. Lynch who arrived in Artsakh Wednesday.
“I congratulate the government of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic for their commitment to a transparent and fair election. I look forward to participating in this democratic process,” Lynch said before leaving for Artsakh.
In Yerevan, President Serzh Sarkisian sent a congratulatory note to his counterpart.
“Your decisive victory in the elections is a confirmation of the historic choice of the people of Artsakh and the irreversible path toward political freedom, democracy and a society based on national and universal values. This is the common path of Armenia, Artsakh and all Armenians. We are going to pass it together,” Sarkisian said in his letter.
Armenia’s Foreign Minister Eduard Nalbandian, in a written statement, welcomed the election.
“With these elections the people of Artsakh once again proved their determination to decide their fate through democratic means,” said Nalbandian.
“I don’t think that any democratic country can challenge the need for and importance of forming governments through democratic elections,” added Nalbandian.
“With these elections the people of Artsakh once again proved their resolve to build their future in a democratic way,” concluded the foreign minister’s statement.