Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan held a meeting with lawmaker Edmon Marukyan, the leader of the Bright Armenia (LHK) political party and its parliamentary faction, the Prime Minister’s Office said.
“I’m glad to see you. Honestly, the occasion for continuing the discussions on the topic of early elections of parliament were your statements. And I hope that at least this time we will succeed in reaching common ground not only with you but also our colleagues in the Prosperous Armenia faction, because if eventually the parliamentary forces make a decision to hold early elections, including decisions in terms of a couple of important issues around it, I mean timeframes and so on, then we can consider this issue to be solved. From the very beginning this is what our viewpoint was, that eventually this political chapter must end through the expression of will of the people, and today I will be glad to hear out your viewpoints on how to advance,” the PM said, adding that before making decisions he should also meet with Prosperous Armenia party leader Gagik Tsarukyan, the ruling My Step bloc leader Lilit Makunts, as well as other lawmakers in order to achieve a consensus solution.
“Perhaps we’ll also present the situation to the President, so that he expresses his stance and in a way becomes the guarantor of implementation of our agreements,” the PM added.
In turn, Edmon Marukyan said: “Thank you Mr. Prime Minister for responding to my statement. I’d like to start with the offer itself. I made an offer based on the political crisis, that is, the general staff story added on to what we had before that, and that’s a big part of the political crisis now. Based on this, I stated that in order to avoid further escalation and clashes, there could be countless scenarios, which I oppose. I had offered to stop the army-government opposition and go for elections, because it is obvious that we can’t have any agreement on the pre-election process as long as the issue of the army isn’t resolved. Why am I saying this? Because it is obvious that [you] won’t resign in order to dissolve parliament in conditions when the issue regarding the general staff doesn’t have a resolution – the general staff generals are there, they aren’t leaving, statements and so on. This is the context of my offer , that is – let’s resolve this part together and head for elections. In our case we don’t have any obstacle regarding the election, but I agree with you that we should continue negotiations.”
Marukyan hoped that they will also meet with the BHK.
Pashinyan said it is inadmissible to tie the general staff issue with early elections because the constitution stipulates that the military is apolitical.
Pashinyan and Marukyan agreed to continue consultations for the resolution of the political crisis.