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Prime Minister Karen Karapetian said on Tuesday that his government has received a popular “mandate for change” and will strive to transform Armenia after winning Sunday’s parliamentary elections.

“We are determined to put into practice the mandate for change given to us by the people,” Karapetian said in a message on the election outcome posted on his Facebook page.

“Consistent and hard work awaits us,” he wrote. “Undoubtedly, a lot needs to be done but we are not afraid of the difficult path ahead.”

“I promise that we will spare no effort to create a NEW ARMENIA so that every citizen of our country feels better than they did before,” added the first deputy chairman of the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK).

Karapetian personally conducted the HHK’s election campaign, pledging to implement “serious reforms” and attract large-scale investments in Armenia’s economy. He already unveiled an ambitious reform agenda shortly after being appointed as prime minister in September. Opposition leaders dismissed it as a publicity stunt aimed at facilitating the HHK’s victory in the April 2 elections.

The HHK leadership has made clear that Karapetian will continue to serve as prime minister at least until President Serzh Sarkisian serves out his final term and Armenia becomes a parliamentary republic in April 2018. Sarkisian, who is also the HHK’s chairman, has still not clarified whether he plans to replace Karapetian then. He has said only that he will continue playing a major role in “ensuring the security of our people.”

Karapetian indicated earlier that he would like to retain his post after April 2018.

The 53-year-old premier did not say on Tuesday whether his cabinet formed in October will undergo changes as a result of the elections. Sarkisian and the HHK have also not made any public statements to that effect so far.

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