YREVAN, Armenia (AP) – The partial results of Armenia’s early parliamentary elections on Monday showed a solid advantage for the party of interim Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, who called for elections in a bid to ease anger in the country. for the peace agreement it signed with Azerbaijan.
The calculation continued in the early morning, but the bloc of Pashinyan’s main rival said it would not accept the results until doubts about the electoral process are dispelled.
The country’s electoral commission indicated that, after accounting for about 47% of the electoral districts, the Civil Contract party to which Pashinyan belongs had 58% of the votes, and the bloc of former President Robert Kocharyan ranked second with 19%. Another party hovered around the 5% threshold to win seats in parliament; a bloc affiliated with another ex-president was also in the 5% range, but coalitions require 7% to win parliamentary seats.
Pashinyan called for snap elections after months of protests demanding his resignation due to the peace agreement he signed to end six weeks of fighting with Azerbaijan around the Nagorno Karabakh region.
As a result of the pact, Azebaijan regained control of large parts of Nagorno Karabakh and surrounding areas that had been under the power of Armenian forces for more than a quarter of a century. Thousands of Armenians took to the streets of the capital, Yerevan, to protest the agreement, considering it a betrayal of national interests.
The Alliance for Armenia, led by Kocharyan, disputed the preliminary results.
The results “are in marked contrast to the various manifestations of public life (and) to the results of the polls,” the party said in a statement. Many opinion polls showed the bloc in a bitter dispute with Pashinyan’s party.
The statement also cited unspecified violations during election day, noting: “We will not accept election results until all problematic issues are clarified and doubts dispelled.”
Only 49% of registered voters participated.