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U.S. Department of State
96/09/26 Statement: Armenia: Presidential Elections (Revised)
Office of the Spokesman


Press Statement by Glyn Davies/Acting Spokesman
September 26, 1996


                 Armenia: Presidential Elections (Revised)


The United States is following the September 22 presidential elections in Armenia with great interest.  The elections are a critical step in the building of democracy in Armenia.

It is regrettable and unfortunate that the opposition forces resorted to violence yesterday, including the storming of the parliament building.  Violence has no place in a democracy.  The United States condemns acts of political violence and calls upon all involved to exercise restraint.

The September 24 OSCE statement noted that there were serious breaches in the law witnessed by international observers.  The OSCE also observed that while serious, the breaches did not in themselves constitute a systematic attempt to deny the will of the people and that, at this stage in the electoral process, the breaches in the law do not seem to have materially affected the election's outcome.  The United States is concerned about OSCE reports of these irregularities and awaits the OSCE's final assessment.

The United States urges all parties to await the Central Electoral Commission's final election results and the final assessment of the OSCE election observer team.  The United States calls on all political parties to respect the ongoing political process in order to promote the establishment of Armenian democracy.
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