Mediamax, Armenia
Feb 21 2013

The United States congratulates the people of Armenia on their
February 18 presidential elections

Yerevan/Mediamax/. The United States congratulates the people of
Armenia on their February 18 presidential elections, which were judged
by international observers to be generally well-administered and
characterized by a respect for fundamental freedoms, including those
of assembly and expression.

U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Victoria Nuland said this in a statement.

`The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe's Office for
Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ODIHR) found that the
media fulfilled its legal obligation to provide balanced coverage, and
that all contestants made use of their free air time.

We share, however, OSCE/ODIHR's concerns about a lack of impartiality
on the part of the public administration and the misuse of
administrative resources that resulted in a blurred distinction
between the activities of the state and those of the ruling party,
both during the pre-election period and on Election Day. We agree with
the findings that while Election Day was calm and orderly, it was
marked by undue interference in the process, mainly by proxies
representing the incumbent, and some serious violations, including
cases of pressure on voters.

The United States will continue to monitor the findings of
international and domestic election observers, as well as the
adjudication of election grievances during the post-election period.
We urge law enforcement officials to investigate and to take
appropriate action in response to credible reporting of election
violations, and we call on all parties to remain calm in this
post-election period and to exercise restraint in their actions',
statement reads.