Nikol Pashinian Elected Prime Minister of Armenian

Armenia’s ‘Revolutionary Granny Leila “We’re Headed for a Better Day”

Armenia’s ‘Revolutionary Granny Leila “We’re Headed for a Better Day”

Armenia's governing Republican Party will provide the additional votes needed to elect a prime minister during a parliamentary vote on Tuesday, a Republican Party lawmaker told Reuters.

On April 17, the Armenian parliament elected Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan, the ex-President of the country, who a week after the end of his presidential term became the PM of the country, so maintaining most of the power in his own hands. The Republican Party (HHK) faction, the ruling party of Armenia, has 58 seats in the 105-seat unicameral parliament of Armenia - known as the National Assembly.

Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland օn behalf of the Council of Europe congratulated Nikol Pashinyan on his election as Prime Minister of Armenia.

Before his resignation, Sargsyan was appointed prime minister last month after serving 10 years as the country's president. After 30 years of fighting with Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh, a region both countries claim, he has said he will make the enclave part of Armenia.

Pashinyan has promised to rid Armenia of corruption and poverty and is still the only candidate running for the PM's post. So Mr. Pashinyan went to Yerevan's central Republic Square, the throbbing heart of the protests, where an estimated 250,000 people had gathered, and called for a nationwide strike at 8:15 the next morning. On May 1, Pashinyan's bid to become prime minister was blocked in parliament.

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"I am very happy because this is a movement for the people, Armenians have come together and learned to love one another", said Anna Maritosyan, a social worker who was among the celebrants. He said his ministers will be chosen "as a result of discussions" with his allies and other political groups.

The hugely popular Pashinyan has in recent weeks piled pressure on the ruling party through an unprecedented campaign of civil disobedience that plunged the Moscow-allied nation into its most serious political crisis in years.

Pashinyan said the protest movement empowered ordinary Armenians, showing them they could determine the future of their country. Karen Karapetyan also asked to consider as terminated the fulfillment of his duties of Acting Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia. He was released from jail in 2011 under a prisoner amnesty scheme and elected to parliament the next year.

Tankian credited the crowds that have taken to the streets repeatedly to support Pashinian since mid-April for achieving a major, peaceful change of government in the small Caucasus country.

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