“Yes, we have decided to take our mandates,” Ishkhan Saghatelian told RFE/RL’s Armenian Service. “We will make a statement to that effect shortly.”
Hayastan and another major opposition bloc, Pativ Unem, faced calls for boycotting the National Assembly on a permanent basis following the June 20 parliamentary elections which they claim were marred by serious irregularities.
Hayastan’s top leader, former President Robert Kocharian, indicated on June 22 that his bloc will likely take up the 29 seats which it won, according to the Central Election Commission (CEC), in the 107-member National Assembly. He said presence in the parliament will give Hayastan “additional and substantial levers” to challenge Pashinian’s government.
Kocharian announced late on Monday that he himself will cede his seat to another Hayastan candidate. He argued, in particular, that he is a “man of the executive branch” and ran for the post of prime minister in the snap elections.
Pativ Unem, which is led by another ex-president, Serzh Sarkisian, is also expected to take up its 7 seats in the parliament. The bloc’s spokesman, Sos Hakobian, said it will announce its decision by Wednesday evening.
Pashinian’s Civil Contract party will control 71 parliament seats. No other political force will be represented in the National Assembly.
Hayastan, Pativ Unem and two smaller opposition groups challenged the official vote results in the Constitutional Court later in June. The court rejected over the weekend their demands to annul those results.