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Armenia to hold snap parliamentary elections

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Armenia to hold snap parliamentary elections

Screen Shot 2021 06 19 at 3 35 20 PM
Photo: Vahram Baghdasaryan/Reuters/Photolure

Voting will begin today in Armenia’s parliamentary elections. 

Initially scheduled for December 2023, the elections were moved forward in the wake of the ongoing political crisis in the country, namely, former Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan’s handling of the recent Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, which saw Armenia ceding large swathes of territory to Azerbaijan. 

While 24 parties and coalitions are running, most notable among them are Pashinyan’s populist Civil Contract (CC) Party and the right-wing, pro-Russia Armenia Alliance (AA) coalition, led by former Armenian President Robert Kocharyan. Current polling suggests that AA will secure a narrow plurality of the vote with 28.7%, trailed closely by CC with 25.2%. While neither party has enough support to secure a majority, multiple parties, including the third-highest polling I Have Honor coalition, have expressed support for building a ruling coalition with CC and are likely to do so once results are declared. 

If elected, Kocharyan is expected to become Prime Minister and will likely prioritize security matters, notably reinforcing the joint Armenia-Azerbaijan border commission, founded in late May to officially demarcate the borders between the neighbors. CC prioritizes regional peace and security and will likely embrace ongoing diplomatic and political support from Russia. 

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