Decision 2013: Bagratyan claims authorities tried to stop Hovannisian from winning

Decision 2013: Bagratyan claims authorities tried to stop Hovannisian from winning

Photolure

Former prime minister Hrant Bagratyan, who finished a distant third in the Monday presidential vote, according to preliminary results, has claimed that the authorities tried to stop official runner-up Raffi Hovannisian from beating the incumbent in the election.

The Central Election Commission said early this morning that Hovannisian polled about 37 percent of the vote, while current head of state Serzh Sargsyan won the election with more than 58 percent. A runoff would have had to be appointed between Sargsyan and Hovannisian had the former polled less than half of the vote.

Bagratyan posted a message on his Facebook account overnight, giving his assessment to the presidential election.

“From the very outset the government has not only been seeking victory for its candidate, but also deciding who would come second or third. Raffi [Hovannisian] made a perfect use of it. Bravo! In the end the authorities openly regretted it and tried to stop his victory. But it was late. The further pace of the developments will depend on him. Had Paruyr [Hayrikyan] behaved properly, I am sure he would have finished third,” wrote Bagratyan, thanking those who had voted for him for their support and assuring them that their votes would not be lost.

Late last night Hovannisian invited his supporters for a rally in Liberty Square in Yerevan at 5 pm Tuesday.