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Pashinian Replaces Finance, Justice Ministers


Armenia - Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian and members of his government attend a parliament session in Yerevan, January 20, 2021.

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian replaced Armenia’s ministers of justice and finance on Tuesday as part of a post-election cabinet reshuffle.

Five other members of his cabinet -- Deputy Prime Minister Mher Grigorian and the current ministers of economy, health, education and emergencies -- were reappointed to their posts in separate decrees initiated by Pashinian and signed by President Armen Sarkissian.

Sarkissian formalized on Monday several other cabinet appointments made by Pashinian. In particular, Armenia’s second deputy prime minister, Tigran Avinian, was replaced by Minister for Territorial Administration and Infrastructures Suren Papikian. Two other ministers retained their posts.

Armenia’s new finance minister, Tigran Khachatrian, served as economy minister from October 2018 to November 2020.

Khachatrian replaced Atom Janjughazian, another technocrat who joined Pashinian’s first cabinet formed after the 2018 “velvet revolution.” Janjughazian, 50, had headed the Armenian state treasury for nearly two decades preceding his ministerial appointment.

Also replaced was Justice Minister Rustam Badasian. According to Armenian press reports, he will be appointed as head of the State Revenue Committee.

Badasian’s successor, Karen Andreasian, was Armenia’s human rights ombudsman from 2011-2016.

Pashinian’s reshuffled government is due to submit later this month a five-year policy program to the new Armenian parliament elected on June 20. Its almost certain approval by the National Assembly controlled by the ruling Civil Contract party would amount to a vote of confidence in the government.

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