28 Apr 2018 20:19

Sargsyan's party decides not to nominate candidate for PM - press secretary

YEREVAN. April 28 (Interfax) - Armenia's ruling Republican Party, led by former president and former prime minister Serzh Sargsyan, will not nominate a candidate for prime minister, parliamentary Deputy Chairman and Republican Party spokesman Eduard Sharmazanov said.

"I have had a meeting with ex-prime minister Serzh Sargsyan and acting Prime Minister Karen Karapetyan. The meeting's agenda had one item: the domestic political situation and our position on the election of a prime minister," Sharmazanov told journalists.

"The Republican Party has decided not to nominate a candidate for prime minister of Armenia. We will discuss all candidates to be nominated and will make our decision before the vote on May 1. The political situation has changed, and Armenia is having a domestic political crisis," he said.

The party is guided exclusively by the interests of the state, Sharmazanov said.

"This is a carefully thought-out decision. When all candidates are nominated, we will make our decision based on our discussions. We have until 6:00 p.m. on April 30. At present, we do not know whether there are any other candidates for prime minister except [protest movement leader and head of the Elk parliamentary faction] Nikol Pashinyan," he said.

"This decision was made following a meeting with Serzh Sargzyan and Karen Karapetyan an hour ago on Saturday. All of us accepted this as the best decision for Armenia," Sharmazanov said.

"We have said more than once that we are being guided exclusively by the national interest. We cannot lead our country toward disturbances. We are leading our country toward democracy. Part of the population is against us. And this is our decision. Time will show whether it is right or wrong. We will remain actively engaged in politics," he said.

The party will run in early parliamentary elections if they are held, Sharmazanov said.

"We will participate in parliamentary elections," he said.