ArmInfo. In Armenia, at exactly 8:00pm local time, 2008 polling stations were closed for voting in early parliamentary elections. The vote counting process has started. As of 5:00pm, 989,972 voters or 38.17% of the total eligible citizens voted in the early elections to the National Assembly of Armenia, CEC Secretary Armen Smbatyan said. According to the CEC, the number of Armenian citizens eligible to vote is 2,593,572. 40.15% or 344868 voters voted in four constituencies in Yerevan.
According to the CEC, 37.5% of voters (83,766) voted in Ararat region, 31.82% (75,035) in Armavir, 37.89% (44511) in Aragatsotn, 37.38% (70,836) in Gegharkunik, Lori - 37.38% (87310), Kotayk region - 38.77% (93 828), Shirak region - 32.27% (73 171), Vayots Dzor region - 42.66% (19 888), Syunik region - 46.83% (51 383) and Tavush region - 41,37% (45376).
Armenia elects parliament of the 8th convocation
Extraordinary elections to the National Assembly of the 8th convocation were held in Armenia today. Starting from 08.00am local time, 2008 polling stations were opened throughout the republic in 38 territorial districts. 479 are located in Yerevan, another 1529 - in the regions. According to the Armenian police, 2 million 578 thousand 678 people are registered in the voter register. 2.578 million citizens have the right to participate in elections - more than 855 thousand in Yerevan.
25 political forces are taking part in the elections: 4 blocs and 21 parties: "Fair Armenia" party; "Armenian National Congress"; "Civil Contract" party; the National-Christian party "Zartonk" (Awakening - ed. note); the party "Freedom"; "I Have the Honor" bloc; "United Homeland" party; the party "All-Armenian National Statehood"; party "Bright Armenia"; the party "Our Home is Armenia"; Party "Republic"; the party "Armenian Motherland"; bloc "Free Motherland"; Prosperous Armenia Party; Democratic Party of Armenia; party "National Conservative Movement 5165"; Social Democratic Party "Citizen's Decision"; Alliance of Democrats Shirinyan-Babajanyan bloc; party "National Agenda"; party "Rise"; party "Azatakan" (Liberal - ed.); European Party of Armenia; bloc "Armenia"; the party "National - Democratic Pole"; party "Sovereign Armenia". The elections were held on a 100% proportional system. The entry barrier for parties is set at 5%, for alliances - 7%. There is no turnout threshold.
Ombudsman's Office and Armenian Police reports on violations
As of 4:00pm, the RA Police received 57 signals about violations recorded during the early parliamentary elections. According to the press service of the Police, the reported violations related to voting more than once (14 cases), obstruction of the exercise of the right to vote (2 cases), violation of the secrecy of voting (1 case), deliberate damage to property (1 case), bodily harm (1 case) and other violations (1 case). At the same time, the RA Police revealed cases of giving electoral bribes in the Ararat region. In particular, in the Vedi community, a man and his wife were offered to vote for one of the announced blocs in exchange for 30 thousand drams, in the village of Noramarg, electoral bribes were distributed to residents in the amount of 15-20 thousand drams. On the fact of the revealed violations, criminal cases were initiated. An investigation is underway.
The Office of the Human Rights Defender reports that as of 6:00pm, they received 145 messages and applications regarding the electoral process, studied 941 publications in social networks and the media. The signals received by the hotline mainly concerned the accessibility of the polling station, the impossibility of self-representation of persons with disabilities, the issue of inclusion in additional voter lists, violations of the voting procedure, etc. Among the most frequently recorded publications in social networks and the media are violations of the procedure for submitting ballots, cases of directed voting by citizens, including military personnel, violation of the established form of ballots, etc. Special attention was paid to the issues of ensuring the smooth work of observers and journalists.