YEREVAN, February 4. /ARKA/. The attempted assassination of candidate for Armenian president Pariyr Hayrikyan will have a negative impact on the election campaign of the current president Serzh Sargsyan, presidential nominee philologist Vardan Sedrakyan said as quoted by Novosti-Armenia.
Presidential nominee, leader of National Self-Determination party Paruyr Hayrikyan was shot in the shoulder in the center of Yerevan, Tpagrichneri street, where his parents live, around 23:30 Thursday night. A couple of our after his surgery he told journalists that he would have to ask for a two-week postponement of the vote for rehabilitation.
“After what happened, the current president will find it more difficult to run an election campaign under “Towards secure Armenia” slogan as these words will not be sufficiently convincing anymore”, Sedrakyan said.
Apart from that, the assassination attempt will have a negative impact on another nominee’s, i.e. head of Radio Hay Andrias Ghukasyan’s election campaign as well, according to Sedrakyan. Ghukasyan is on an open-ended hunger strike from January 21 demanding to declare the elections illegitimate due to use of administrative resource by the ruling Republican Party of Armenia.
According to Sedrakyan, postponement of the vote may make Ghukasyan cease his hunger-strike and turn his protest into nonsense.
According to Armenia’s Constitution article N 52, presidential elections may be postponed for a two-week period if insurmountable obstacles occur on the way of any presidential nominee. Head of parliament commission for state and legal issues David Harutiunyan said that Armenia’s central electoral commission has no authority to decide on the postponement without a procedure initiated by Hayrikyan himself.
Sedrakyan also said that the attempt will not have any impact on Hayrikyan’s rating.
Armenia’s presidential elections are scheduled for February 18. Eight nominees are running for presidency: current president Serzh Sargsyan, former prime minister and leader of Freedom party Hrant Bagratyan, former foreign minister and head of Heritage party Raffi Hovhannisyan, famous Soviet dissident and leader of National Self-Determination party Paruyr Hayrikyan, ex foreign minister of Karabakh Arman Melikyan, political scientist and head of Radio Hay Andrias Ghukasyan, philologist Vardan Sedrakyan and leader of National Consent party Aram Harutinyan. -0-