FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 1, 2020
Contact: Sevag Belian (613) 235-2622
OTTAWA – Yesterday, the free people of Artsakh turned out in unprecedented numbers to elect their next president and parliament.
Five political parties from across the political spectrum will now form the 7th parliament of the Republic of Artsakh. With no presidential candidate achieving the required 50% threshold, the top two candidates, former Prime Minister Arayik Harutyunyan and Foreign Affairs Minister Masis Mayilyan, will face each other in a second round on April 14th.
The Armenian National Committee of Canada congratulates all the political parties that participated and achieved victory in yesterday’s election and commends the people of Artsakh for overcoming difficult circumstances and Azerbaijani propaganda to vote for their representatives.
Commenting on the elections, ANCC Co-presidents Hrag Tarakdjian and Shahen Mirakian issued the following statement;
“Free and fair elections are at the core of Artsakh’s nation-building process and its commitment to strong democratic standards.
With over 72% voter turnout, the people of Artsakh have once again spoken loud and clear, demonstrating their commitment to chart their own course and defend their hard-earned sovereignty.
Despite Azerbaijan’s continuous attempts to internationally isolate Artsakh and impose its agenda of war and aggression in the region, Artsakh continues to remain committed to the negotiation process, dismissing all alternatives to the peaceful resolution of the conflict.
It is very unfortunate, however that the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), of which Canada is a member, continues to show utter indifference and disregard to the free will of the people, dismissing the results of the election. We are profoundly concerned by the unconstructive statement made by the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs yesterday, undermining the democratic process initiated and led by the people. The right of self-determination must be upheld in any conflict settlement and these elections are a powerful and remarkable testament to that principle of utmost importance. It is disappointing that the OSCE continues to disregard this reality.
This election process – which was marked by healthy political competition and friendly discourse – is a great testament to the fact that Artsakh is not a mere conflict, but a country full of potential and prospects.
We commend each and every citizen of the Republic of Artsakh for their important participation and contribution to this vital process and congratulate the new members of parliament, wishing them a successful term in office” read the statement.
The ANCC will continue to monitor the second round of the presidential election and will issue a statement accordingly, after April 14th.
The ANCC is the largest and the most influential Armenian-Canadian grassroots human rights organization. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters, and supporters throughout Canada and affiliated organizations around the world, the ANCC actively advances the concerns of the Armenian-Canadian community on a broad range of issues and works to eliminate abuses of human rights throughout Canada and the world.