Raffi Hovannisian sounded a cautious note on Friday over growing cooperation among his Zharangutyun (Heritage) party and the three other parliamentary parties challenging the Armenian government.
Hovannisian argued that “complete regime change” is still not their shared objective, pointing to a cautious stance adopted by Gagik Tsarukian’s Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK), the largest of the four forces.
“There is a form of parliamentary cooperation which is welcome and even unprecedented,” he said. “It’s working well and it represents a common denominator, a basis on which the four parties are working together. That will continue but there is no question of going beyond that.”
The four parties agreed earlier this week to jointly propose a parliamentary vote of no confidence in Prime Minister Tigran Sarkisian and his cabinet next a month.
Hovannisian again described this initiative as a “half measure,” saying that they should go further and campaign for President Serzh Sarkisian’s resignation. He urged the BHK to join opposition calls for Sarkisian’s ouster. “I hope that we will soon hear a positive answer [from the BHK,]” he told a news conference.
Hovannisian, who was Sarkisian’s main challenger in the February 2013 presidential election, said the four parties should pile up the pressure on the authorities by reaching out to other opposition and civic groups and launching street protests in the coming weeks. He said Zharangutyun will begin on March 28 a series of rallies in Yerevan for that purpose.