New president of Nagorno-Karabakh takes office
The inauguration of Arayik Harutyunyan, who was elected president of the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, took place on May 21 in the city of Shushi. The top leadership of Armenia was also present at the ceremony.
The ceremony was held in the city of Shushi, in the hall of the Cultural and Youth Center.
Harutyunyan promised ‘to ensure the sovereignty, territorial integrity and security of Nagorno-Karabakh.’
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On March 31, both presidential and parliamentary elections were held in Nagorno-Karabakh. Then, according to the Central Election Commission, not one of the 14 presidential contenders won the necessary 50 percent or more votes for the final victory.
Two weeks later on April 14, the second round of elections took place, and Arayik Harutyunyan was elected after winning a majority of votes.
The new president will have significantly more powers than his predecessors. In 2017, a new constitution was adopted in Karabakh, according to which the republic switched from a semi-presidential form of government to a presidential one.
As for the parliamentary elections, 12 political forces participated in them. Of these, 1 block and 4 parties entered the new parliament.
Voters again gave the majority of votes to the bloc of former Prime Minister Arayik Harutyunyan.
The Free Homeland / United Civil Alliance bloc received 40.4 percent.
The Democratic Party, United Homeland, Justice, ARF Dashnaktsutyun will also be represented in parliament.
On May 21, a new chairman of parliament was also elected – an MP from the ruling faction Arthur Tovmasyan.
The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, inhabited by Armenians, exists as a de facto independent republic, not recognized by any state in the world, including Armenia.
In 1991-1994, a war was fought on the territory of the former Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region of Azerbaijan and the surrounding areas. It ended with the signing of a truce, but skirmishes periodically continue. After the military phase of the conflict, ethnic Azerbaijanis left Karabakh. Azerbaijan considers Karabakh and the territories around it occupied during the war occupied, and demands their return. Negotiations to resolve the conflict through international mediation have so far failed. The last outbreak of full-scale hostilities – the so-called “April war”, or “four-day war”, occurred in April 2016. As a result, dozens of people died on both sides.