U.S. Ambassador John Heffern on Tuesday met with opposition leader Levon Ter-Petrosian and reportedly discussed with him Armenia’s forthcoming presidential election.
A statement by Ter-Petrosian’s Armenian National Congress (HAK) said the HAK leader “addressed in great detail” internal political developments and the election in particular. It said Ter-Petrosian also “presented views on Armenia’s future and prospects for development.”
“The first president especially stressed the importance of waging a relentless fight against systemic corruption and clarified necessary urgent steps in that direction,” the statement added without elaborating.
The U.S. Embassy in Yerevan issued on statements on the meeting.
It thus remained unclear whether Ter-Petrosian answered lingering questions about his participation in the election due in February. The HAK leader, who was the main opposition candidate in the last Armenian presidential vote, has still not clarified whether he will again run for president.
Observers believe that Ter-Petrosian and his entourage are waiting to see if the Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK), the country’s second largest parliamentary force, will challenge the incumbent President Serzh Sarkisian in the ballot. BHK leader Gagik Tsarukian has also not clarified his plans yet.
Ter-Petrosian’s closest associate, Levon Zurabian, last week called on the BHK to join forces with the HAK in trying to unseat Sarkisian in the unfolding race. Zurabian did not specify if that means the opposition bloc is ready, in principle, to throw its weight behind a BHK presidential candidate.