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Ohanian Attacks Ruling Party


Armenia - Former Defense Minister Seyran Ohanian (C) and former Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian (second from right) launch their election campaign in Yerevan, 5Mar2017.

Former Defense Minister Seyran Ohanian indicated on Tuesday that his alliance with opposition leaders Vartan Oskanian and Raffi Hovannisian will not seek power-sharing agreements with the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) after next month’s parliamentary elections.

Ohanian, Oskanian and other leading members of the alliance criticized the HHK’s track record as they campaigned in the northern Tavush province.

“We will be fighting against the ruling Republican Party,” Ohanian told RFE/RL’s Armenian service (Azatutyun.am) after rallies held in the regional towns of Ijevan and Dilijan.

The retired army general, who was President Serzh Sarkisian’s defense minister for more than eight years, said he has “a lot of respect” for all other election contenders except the HHK. “Not because I want to denigrate the HHK’s merits but because the result [of its rule] is such,” he added.

In that regard, Ohanian said his alliance is ready to cooperate with another bloc headed by businessman Gagik Tsarukian as a result of the April 2 vote. “We have communicated, talked and evaluated the situation before,” he said. “We were friends and at the appropriate moment we will be ready to discuss any situation or decision to close the ranks, to create an axis for achieving victory,” he said.

Tsarukian himself has not yet commented on the possibility of entering into possible post-election coalitions with the HHK or opposition forces. He has also avoided public criticism of the Armenian authorities so far.

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