[02:41 pm] 03 April, 2006

The two Parliamentary oppositional fractions - the Justice and the
National Unity have recently signed under the amendments to the
Electoral Code which were to be sent to the Venice Commission. Of
course they signed it "on several conditions".

"What conditions can there be in the legislative initiatives? If
you have signed it, you have signed it. In fact the conditions are
something unclear", says head of the National Democratic Party, deputy
Shavarsh Kocharyan. Today he spoke about the issues of the Electoral
Code in the "Pastark" club. He criticized both the authorities,
and the opposition, and the amendments to the Electoral Code.

It is a usual announcement in Armenia that the elections will be
free and fair if the authorities have "political will". At present
Shavarsh Kocharyan realizes that the opposition is wrong to make that
announcement as the issue has a reverse side, "If we rely on the will
of the authorities, we must sit with our hands folded. The reverse side
of the issue is the will of the opposition: to control their votes. "

According to the head of the National Democratic Party, signing under
the amendments to the Electoral Code, the oppositional Parliamentarians
stated that they do not have a political will. "Of course, the NDP
is excluded in this case".

Alongside with the amendments to the 100 articles of the Electoral
Code, since March 13 another draft has been introduced in the NA
under the authorship of Shavarsh Kocharyan. He represented to amended
articles but a completely new Code. At present the document is
being translated into English so that it can be sent to the Venice
Commission. "When we finish the translation, the NDP will apply
to Arthur Baghdasaryan to send it the Venice. If it is not sent
officially, we will do it ourselves, for example, we will turn to
the OSCE", Shavarsh Kocharyan says.

He also compared his draft with the amendments signed
by the Parliamentarians. He noted that there is progress
concerning the latter, but there are issues which record obvious
regress. "Unfortunately the draft is the usual imitation which is
not directed toward the solution of the real problems." According
to Shavarsh Kocharyan, a dangerous situation has been created when
the imperfect draft is sent to the experts and there isn't a power
in the country which can make a political announcement, "If the law
with shortcomings is adopted, the opposition will do the following..."

"In order to be able to give adequate and efficient answers, you must
work", Shavarsh Kocharyan concluded.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress