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New Times opposition party cites violations in Armenia polls

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Armenia's New Times opposition party said a televised statement that the country's top security official made on the day of parliamentary elections was illegal.
YEREVAN, May 12 (RIA Novosti) - Armenia's New Times opposition party said a televised statement that the country's top security official made on the day of parliamentary elections was illegal.

The party quoted Gorik Akopyan, the head of the National Security Service, as saying, "The authorities will not let the minority to impose its choice on the majority."

"This statement ... is direct pressure on the people of Armenia, which also seriously violates the Election Code," the party said.

New Times cited other irregularities in the voting process, including the lack of eligible voters in the lists, votes cast in favor of the pro-government Republican Party in the absence of those Armenian voters who are currently staying in Russia.

In the runup to the elections, thousands of opposition supporters gathered in the streets of Yerevan, the capital, Thursday to protest against the rule of President Robert Kocharyan and demand his resignation. The opposition also vowed to resume protests Sunday if the elections turned out to be fraudulent.

The favorite of the race is the Republican Party (HHK) of Prime Minister Serzh Sarkisyan, which is running together with pro-presidential Prosperous Armenia and Dashnatsutyun.

The leading opposition parties include Zharangutyun (Legacy), Impeachment, Republic, and New Times.

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