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Tuesday, 16 October 2018


Armenia: Dead Souls Are Voting?

2012-04-04 15:52

Armenia: Dead Souls Are Voting?. 26888.jpeg

Electoral lists, which, in the opinion of the opposition and some experts, were padded by several hundred thousand people, have become the actual topic of discussion in Armenia, which is undergoing an active pre-election period in connection with the upcoming May 6 parliamentary elections.


Sharp battles on this matter in the press and in political circles in Armenia became more frequent after the police released the lists of voters eligible to take part in the vote in parliamentary elections. According to the lists, 2,48 million Armenians have the right to vote. The number of voters, compared with the presidential election in 2008, has grown by 170,000, raising doubts among experts and opposition forces in the background of a negative migration balance in the country. Only one option may explain the number of voters - only if all citizens of Armenia living abroad have returned to their homeland for this short period, which is unrealistic.

At the official level, such growth in the number of voters by 170 thousand persons compared with 2008 is due to the increasing number of citizens registered in the State Register of the population. According to the opposition, electoral lists are padded by about 600-700 thousand people in order to correct the results of the elections in favor of the current authorities. On the basis of these same reasons, is possible that the Armenian authorities did not agree with opposition's proposal to include to the Electoral Code of an item to make public lists of those participating in the election, which would help to know how many voters actually participated in the elections, and to compare their number with the number of ballots. Media is already reporting about "dead souls" in the lists, among whom there is the name of the former chairman of the Council of Ministers of Soviet Armenia, Academician Fadey Sarkisian, who died two years ago.

The situation is being exacerbated by the fact that the natural increase of population in Armenia for 10 years amounted to 120 thousand people. Summing up the 10-year rate of migration, natural increase and the number of returnees from abroad, it turns out that about 260,000 people (mostly working-age population, which has the right to vote) have left the country for 10 years. This was recently announced by the head of the State Migration Service of Armenia Gagik Yeganian. However, he found it difficult to give a clear answer about the "bloated" electoral lists, only vaguely remarking: "The police is determined to clean the electoral lists".

Skepticism of the chief specialist on migration can be understood since "a sharp increase" the number of voters was recorded while the population has reduced by 10% (260 thousand). Thus, in the background of inability to totally monitor and compare the number of voters with the number of ballots in polling stations, one of the key resources of "correction" of the election (along with bribes and administrative levers) in favor of the government may become electoral lists.

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