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Election Day in Nagorno-Karabakh2012-07-19 13:47
Today, Jule 19, unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic holds the presidential election, the RIA Novosti reported. The current President of Nagorno-Karabakh Bako Sahakyan, member of the National Assembly Vitaly Balasanyan and the Vice-Rector of the Stepanakert Branch of the National Agrarian University Arkady Soghomonyan are the main rivals at the presidential race.
Balo Sahakyan became the head of Nagorno-Karabakh in 2007. That time he won 85 percent of the vote in the first round of election.
The number of voters in Karabakh amounts 98 000 909 people. Polling stations, total number of which amounts 274, including one in Yerevan, opened at 8 am Moscow time. Voting lasts until 8 pm. To win the first round, the candidate needs to gain more than half of votes. About 80 observers from around the world, including the U.S. and Russia, watch the voting process.
Member of the delegation of the National Assembly of Armenia, leaving for Karabakh to monitor the election, the republican Artak Zakaryan said in an interview with Radio Liberty that the election in Nagorno-Karabakh give the opportunity to once again draw the attention of the international community to Karabakh.
"I am convinced that the next general election in Nagorno-Karabakh will be held at a high level, organized in accordance with democratic principles, standards and requirements, and every citizen of Nagorno-Karabakh will have the opportunity to freely express his opinion through voting", Zakaryan said.
Another delegation member, a representative of the opposition Armenian National Congress, former Prime Minister Hrant Bagratyan stated that the probability of electoral fraud in Nagorno-Karabakh is low, in addition, standards of living there is higher than in Armenia.
"Of course, there is no need for the violations, because the military events are mobilizing people, and there is a definite social solidarity towards democratic values, much higher than in Armenia", Bagratyan said.