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Ter-Petrosian ‘Still Weighing Up’ 2013 Presidential Bid


Armenia - Opposition leader Levon Ter-Petrosian at a rally in Yerevan, 20Apr2012.

Armenia - Opposition leader Levon Ter-Petrosian at a rally in Yerevan, 20Apr2012.

Opposition leader Levon Ter-Petrosian has still not decided whether to stand as a candidate in next year’s presidential election, a senior representative of his Armenian National Congress (HAK) said on Tuesday.

“Ter-Petrosian needs to very seriously consider all political factors and resources before being able to make a decision,” Levon Zurabian told RFE/RL’s Armenian service (Azatutyun.am). “Right now he is in the process of doing just that.”

“The approaches of other political forces are important, and all this needs to be clarified,” he said. “Our relationships in the internal and external political contexts also need to be clarified.”

Zurabian, who leads the HAK’s 7-member faction in the Armenian parliament, acknowledged that Ter-Petrosian’s decision hinges, in large measure, on his ability to win support from other opposition forces. “That is natural,” he said. “Any serious candidate assessing his chances in any election has to take stock of his allies, negotiate or try to understand the election configuration.”

Zurabian added that Ter-Petrosian’s bloc has not yet negotiated with other political groups over the presidential ballot due in February 2013. “There are certainly conversations, but there are no official negotiations,” he said.

Ter-Petrosian, who served as Armenia’s first president from 1998-2008, was the main opposition candidate in the last presidential election held in 2008. He finished second in the contest, according to its official results which he and his supporters consider fraudulent.

Ter-Petrosian, 67, did not rule out the possibility of his participation in the 2013 vote in an interview with RFE/RL’s Armenian service (Azatutyun.am) last April. “As long as I am able to, I will fight against these authorities,” he said.
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