“Following the December 2015 referendum, Armenia is replacing today’s semi-presidential system with a parliamentary system giving greater powers to the prime minister. The election on 2 April will be the first parliamentary election under the new constitution, making the presence of international observers very important,” comments Mr Bekkevold.
More than 55 parliamentarians from 22 member countries of the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) will observe the Armenian parliamentary elections on 2 April. Mr Bekkevold will lead the delegation and represent the Parliamentary Assembly during both pre-election meetings with key players and the post-election press conference.
“These elections represent not only a change in the constitutional system of Armenia, but also the first use of a new voting system and new election day procedures. As observers, we will pay close attention to the implementation of these new measures,” says Mr Bekkevold.
Under the new electoral system, the number of parliamentary seats will be reduced from 131 to 101, and all representatives will be elected through proportional representation. The new system also provides for a second election round if the initial result does not assure a “stable majority” in parliament.
Mr Bekkevold is head of the Storting’s delegation to the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, and has previously observed elections in Moldova, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Ukraine, the USA and Kazakhstan.
In addition to the Parliamentary Assembly observers, around 40 long-term observers and experts as well as 250 short-term observers will monitor the election on behalf of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR).
The election observers will publish a preliminary statement on the day after the election. The statement will also be available for download from the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly website.
See the press release from the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly on observing the election in Armenia.