President Serzh Sarkisian met on Friday with the head of the largest international mission to monitor Armenia’s upcoming presidential election which began its work earlier this month.
In a written statement, Sarkisian’s campaign headquarters said he discussed with Heidi Tagliavini of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe “issues related to the election campaign of presidential candidate Serzh Sarkisian.” It gave no details of that discussion.
The statement also quoted Sarkisian as telling Tagliavini that he regards the OSCE’s election monitoring as a “professional activity” aimed at making a “professional conclusion about electoral processes based on facts.”
Tagliavini has been meeting Armenian government officials, presidential candidates and civil society figures since the official launch of her mission by the OSCE’s Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) two weeks ago.
The mission currently comprises 13 election experts and 24 long-term observers. It is due to be joined by 250 short-term monitors on election day. The mostly Western observers’ findings will be crucial for the international legitimacy of the February 18 election.
“We are interested in the process, not in the result of the election,” Tagliavini told a news conference in Yerevan on January 11.