By Ruzanna Khachatrian
The break-up of the governing Miasnutyun (Unity) bloc, which has been a real possibility for much of the past year, would result in the disbanding of the Armenian parliament and fresh legislative elections, a close ally of Prime Minister Andranik Markarian said on Monday. Galust Sahakian said Markarian’s Republican Party (HHK) and its junior partner in the moribund alliance, the People’s Party (HZhK), prefer to continue their uneasy co-existence primarily because they want to prevent such a development.
“Miasnutyun’s collapse would lead to the dissolution of the National Assembly,” Sahakian, who heads the 25-strong Republican faction in the parliament, told RFE/RL. And both Miasnutyun parties believe that a pre-term vote would usher the country in a new period of political uncertain, he said.
The remarks followed a weekend congress of the HZhK which again brought to light serious differences between the two erstwhile allies. HZhK leader Stepan Demirchian criticized some government policies, in another effort to dissociate his party from Markarian’s cabinet. Other speakers made stronger verbal attacks against the authorities, including President Robert Kocharian whom many HZhK members accuse of thwarting the official inquiry into the 1999 shootings in the parliament.
However, the concluding statement adopted by the congress made no mention of HZhK plans regarding the government and the future of Miasnutyun.
“The HZhK must take a clear stance,” Sahakian said. “That is, to make statements that are understandable to us and the public.”