Pashinyan nominated PM at Armenian parliament's session

Pashinyan nominated PM at Armenian parliament's session

According to the lawmaker, the advantage of the emerging government is that it has a clear understanding on the day it will resign. He was the only candidate nominated to replace long-time leader Serzh Sargsyan, who resigned as prime minister because of the protests.

Mr Pashinyan has said he will rid Armenia of corruption, poverty and nepotism and has promised snap elections.

Speaking with journalists on Monday, Pashinyan said his main project as interim prime minister would be to organise new free and fair parliamentary elections for the post of prime minister.

They also accuse Sarkisian and his dominant Republican Party of widespread corruption and failing to raise living standards. The Republican Party, which has 58 out of 105 seats in the parliament, has not announced its plans on the upcoming voting.

While Pashinian was the only candidate for prime minister, the chamber is controlled by Sargsyan's Republicans.

The planned day of protest in the small ex-Soviet state sets up a standoff between Pashinyan's movement, which has mobilised thousands of people to take to the streets, and a ruling elite which is determined to hold on to power and still controls the security apparatus.

Addressing tens of thousands of supporters massed in the capital Yerevan, he urged them to block roads, railway stations and airports.

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When Mr Sargsyan was elected president in 2008, Mr Pashinyan was among the leaders of protests that turned violent and left 10 people dead. The opposition saw the move as aimed at keeping Sargsyan in power indefinitely.

Over the past few days Pashinyan has secured the backing of two major parties including Prosperous Armenia, giving him a total of 47 votes.

Before the vote, lawmakers grilled Pashinian during a question-and-answer session.

"I want to warn them - gentlemen, the mistaken interpretation of people's leniency as a weakness can lead to a genuine political tsunami".

Republican deputies accused Pashinian of exploiting the young people who have been his core supporters. Some said Pashinyan doesn't have a political platform to offer the country.

"Authorities have made a decision to bide for time, trying to get the opposition to offer concessions", Alexander Iskanderian, director of the Caucasus Institute in Yerevan, said.

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