The Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutyun) may enter into an alliance with other political forces ahead of next year’s parliamentary elections, a leader of the party allied to President Serzh Sarkisian said on Wednesday.
“It’s hard to tell now because there need to be many clarifications,” Armen Rustamian told reporters. “We still don’t know all [election] participants and their programs.”
“Given all this, we can address the issue later on,” he said. “But for now our decision is very clear: we are preparing to go it alone.”
When asked whether Dashnaktsutyun’s involvement in an electoral bloc is possible, Rustamian replied: “Nothing is ruled out.” The party’s electoral strategy will depend, among other things, on the consolidation of opposition forces, he said.
So far only three opposition parties have announced their intention to jointly contest the elections scheduled for April.
Dashnaktsutyun, which is particularly influential in Armenia’s worldwide Diaspora, was part of Sarkisian’s governing coalition from 2008-2009. It reached a new power-sharing deal with Sarkisian in February this year, receiving three ministerial portfolios as a result.
Rustamian, who is the de facto head of the party’s governing body in Armenia, denied media claims that Dashnaktsutyun’s Diaspora branches opposed the deal and remain critical of the Sarkisian administration.
“There is no rift,” he said. “Just recently I visited our structure in Australia. It fully approves of our policy. I took part in their local conference where all these issues were discussed.”
Dashnaktsutyun holds five seats in Armenia’s 131-member parliament. Rustamian expressed confidence that if the party decides to participate in the elections on its own it will pass the 5 percent vote threshold for being represented in the next National Assembly.