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Parliament Majority Suggests Opposition Clarify Its Position Before Challenging Truce Deal


Armenia -- Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian (C) talks to deputies from the majority My Step faction during a parliament session, Yerevan, September 16, 2020.

The ruling parliamentary My Step faction has issued a statement in which it calls on the opposition parties to clarify their position on several issues before discussing the legality of the statement on ending the war in Nagorno-Karabakh signed by the leaders of Armenia, Russia and Azerbaijan.

On November 11, the two opposition factions in Armenia’s National Assembly – Bright Armenia and Prosperous Armenia – initiated a special session of parliament to discuss the document that has largely been branded by the opposition as an act of surrender.

It followed a day of street protests staged by 17 opposition parties, including Prosperous Armenia, during which demonstrators also called for the resignation of Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian.

In its statement My Step suggested that before challenging the deal the opposition parties should “very clearly declare to all Armenians and the world that they support the abolition of Russian mediation; support the withdrawal of Russian peacekeepers from the line of contact; stand for the continuation of the war.”

“After that, the opposition forces should also present a proposed roadmap for victory in the renewed war,” the ruling faction said, adding that accepting the announced conditions in the current situation was the only way to avoid the total loss of Nagorno-Karabakh and thousands of human lives.

At the same time, My Step said it believes that the public should receive answers to all questions that concern it. The faction also said that it is not going “to take part in any sessions aimed at destabilizing the situation” in Armenia.

“Honoring the glorious memory of the military servicemen and volunteers who participated in the fighting and died in the heroic battle of Artsakh [the Armenian name for Nagorno-Karabakh], sharing, with deep sorrow, the pain of families, friends and relatives of the victims, taking into account the internal political events in Armenia and Artsakh that followed the military actions and the truce, the My Step faction declares: the current analysis of the military operations provides grounds to ascertain that the Armenian people with its joint efforts fought, in fact, not only against Azerbaijan, but also against one of the largest armed forces in the world, an army with ultra-modern weapons and an unlimited human reserve, mercenary terrorists and special forces recruited from different countries. During the 45 days of the war, outstanding heroism was shown along the entire front line, thanks to which it was possible to prevent the unleashed genocidal crime of the enemy against Armenians,” My Step’s statement reads.

The ruling faction emphasized that “the pan-Armenian potential was involved in the logistical support of the army during the hostilities.” “The hostilities were taking place in parallel with major geopolitical events conditioned by security challenges that led to the failure of all international efforts to establish a ceasefire regime, including numerous attempts by the three co-chairing countries of the OSCE Minsk Group,” My Step said.

The two parliamentary opposition factions had collected enough signatures to convene a special session of parliament, however, as leader of the Bright Armenia faction Edmon Marukian said, a meeting of the National Assembly Council was to take place before convening the session, which, however, did not take place. Of My Step lawmakers only Deputy Speaker Lena Nazarian had come to parliament.

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