(armenianweekly.com) YEREVAN—The Armenian Revolutionary Federation-Dashnaktsutyun (ARF-D) and the Republican Party of Armenia (RPA) signed a memorandum on the formation of a political coalition on May 11. The memorandum was signed by ARF-D Supreme Council representative Aghvan Vardanyan and RPA Deputy Chair Armen Ashotyan.
“There are three core values set out as the basis of our cooperation. The overall security of Armenia and Artsakh, the economy and economic development, and our common resolve to make qualitative, fundamental changes in the country, said Vardanyan during a press conference held after the signing ceremony. According to Vardanyan, the memorandum will be in force until 2022.
The signing ceremony was attended by Armenian President Serge Sarkisian, Prime Minister Karen Karapetyan, ARF-D Bureau representative Hrant Markarian, and other high-ranking members of the two parties.
Negotiations between the two parties began soon after the results of the April 2 Parliamentary Elections were announced, in which four political parties and blocs—the RPA, the Tsarukyan bloc, the Yelk bloc, and the ARF-D—garnered enough votes to be represented in Parliament.
After months of negotiations, the ARF-D and the RPA signed a “Political Cooperation Agreement” on Feb. 24, 2016, at the Armenian presidential palace in Yerevan
In the 2017 Parliamentary Elections, the RPA won 58 seats while the ARF-D won seven. The ARF-D is represented in Prime Minister Karapetian’s current cabinet by three ministers in line with the Feb. 2016 cooperation.
Below is the English translation of the signed memorandum, published by the Office of the President of Armenia.
Memorandum of Forming Political Coalition
The Republican Party of Armenia and the Armenian Revolutionary Federation,
– Reaffirming their commitment to the agreement on political cooperation signed by the two parties on Feb. 24, 2016 and responsibility to fulfill obligations stipulated by the mentioned agreement;
– Taking into consideration the results of the elections to the RA National Assembly which took place on April 2, 2017;
– Relating the pre-election programs of the Republican Party of Armenia and the Armenian Revolutionary Federation for the April 2, 2017 elections to the National Assembly;
– Stressing the imperative of deepening and making irreversible the structural and qualitative changes initiated by the constitutional changes on Dec. 6, 2015;
– Viewing as a priority creation of qualitatively new authorities, which will be able to create in the society the foundations of trust towards the state and optimism for the future;
– Striving to ensure people’s safe and prosperous life through the joint efforts of the two parties represented in the Government;
form a political coalition and assume political responsibility for all activities of the Government.
1. Strategic objectives of cooperation
1.1. To complete the formation of the structure on upholding human rights and freedoms which guarantees the full implementation of the principles of inviolability of human dignity and the rule of law.
1.2. At this stage of transition to the parliamentary system of governance, to create relevant legislation in line with the Constitution of the Republic of Armenia and adopting the best international practices.
1.3. To ensure transparent, accountable, and efficient work of all bodies of public authority, forming new inter-power relations, which stem from the new constitutional order.
1.4. To promote the atmosphere of competitiveness, tolerance, and cooperation among the political parties as well as the development of the parties’ internal democracy.
1.5. To ensure the common security of the Republic of Armenia and the Republic of Artsakh.
1.6. In foreign relations, to be guided exclusively by the national and state interests.
1.7. To ensure full and direct participation of the Armenian people in the strengthening of the Armenian statehood, re-assessing the role and import of different segments of the Armenian nation.
2. Priorities of the political coalition
2.1. To give a boost to the fight against corruption and merit-based human resources policy.
2.2. To create a new governmental structure and operational mode in line with the standards of efficient governance.
2.3. To complete the nation-army concept, attaching special attention to the establishment of a military production structure based on the national scientific and technological mind.
2.4. To continue to improve the electoral system.
2.5. To form a market economy based social system conducive for sustainable development; to review the current social policy.
2.6. To form settings, which will preclude the overuse of natural resources, will reduce to the greatest possible extent the negative impact on the environment, including on human life and health, will ensure efficient administration of natural resources and control over them.
3. Mode of political coalition’s work and formation
3.1. Cooperation within the political coalition pertains to all activities of the Government.
3.2. The parties of the political coalition are guided by the approaches of mutual respect, understanding, tolerance, resolution of disagreements through negotiations and discussions, with a complete understanding of the responsibility related to the activities of public power bodies and officials.
3.3. The parties of the political coalition assign political positions based on the agreements reached through the consultations. The Republican Party of Armenia will have the right to nominate Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia.
3.4. Before presenting a candidate for the relevant position, the parties of the political coalition present it to the other party of the coalition.
3.5. Only the candidate presented by the given party may be appointed to the position assigned through the discussions to the given party.
3.6. With regard to a given candidate, the other party may present opinions, which are not to be made public.
3.7. The parties of the political coalition undertake,
3.7.1. To adopt constitutional changes and constitutional laws in unanimity. The parties will strive to adopt decisions on other issues unanimously too. In case there is no unanimity, the parties of the political coalition, maintaining mutual trust, the norms of mutual understanding and tolerance may present their views publicly. In case there is no unanimity, regardless of their position, the parties will ensure the implementation of the adopted decision at all levels and parts of power.
3.7.2. By the proposal of any party of the coalition, the parties will discuss any issue related to the National Assembly or Government of the Republic of Armenia.
3.7.3. To ensure the efficiency of the works of the political coalition and regular partisan contacts and comparison of the positions, to form the Coalition Council which will act through the regularly invited sessions. By consent of the parties, there can also be formed regional councils.
3.8. In case there appear principled disagreements between the parties of the political coalition, they will be solved through negotiations. In case no agreement is reached through negotiations, each party after informing the other party in writing may leave the coalition.
3.9. This memorandum on forming a political coalition will be in force until the full power of the National Assembly of the sixth convocation expires.
Vice-Chairman of the Republican Party of Armenia
Representative of the Supreme Body of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation