Why does the Republican Party agree to establish a coalition with Dashnaktsutyun?

Why does the Republican Party agree to establish a coalition with Dashnaktsutyun?

The ruling Republican Party of Armenia (RPA) is seeking to strengthen its position in the upcoming parliamentary elections through the establishment of a coalition with 'Dashnaktsutyun'. It's especially important for the RPA in connection with the transition from a presidential to a parliamentary form of government, experts told Vestnik Kavkaza today, commenting on the cooperation agreement between the two parties.

The head of the parliamentary faction of the Armenian National Congress, Levon Zurabyan, said that 'Dashnaktsutyun' has also cooperated with the authorities in the past. "You know that on December 6th there was a constitutional referendum, which gave the opportunity to Serzh Sargsyan to extend his power through the transition from a presidential to a parliamentary form of government. 'Dashnaktsutyun' has cooperated with the authorities during the referendum and now they have made a coalition, which causes deja vu," he said.

"The pro-government forces suffered a total defeat during the referendum, it is known to all observers, and was followed by very harsh statements by the OSCE observers, the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly, representatives of the EU and the US, because the people spoke against the constitutional amendments, but the results have been turned upside down through manipulation. It's quite obvious that the authorities have a new crisis of legitimacy and they are trying to solve it through the expansion of their political base, in particular, through an alliance with 'Dashnaktsutyun'," Levon Zurabyan explained.

The motives of 'Dashnaktsutyun' are also understandable. "In the last elections they barely gained 5%, therefore they agreed on the alliance with Republicans to get very important ministries for the purpose of election fraud," the leader of the ANC faction believes.

According to him, it is unlikely that the Republican Party wants to include any other party in the coalition. "As for the opposition, in my opinion it's too early to talk about any pre-election alliances," Levon Zurabyan expects.

The deputy director of the Caucasus Institute, Sergey Minasyan, in his turn, assured that this event will not radically change the political situation in Armenia. "The RPA and 'Dashnaktsutyun' have repeatedly founded various coalitions. Basically, the main goal for both 'Dashnaktsutyun' and the Republican Party is the creation of favorable conditions in order to more effectively reach out in 2017, when the parliamentary elections in Armenia will be held," he agreed with Zurabyan.

The expert did not rule out the creation of a coalition among the opposition. "On the other hand, it is unlikely that the pro-government coalition will be more expanded, neither the Republicans nor 'Dashnaktsutyun' need another political force as a partner anymore," he stressed

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