"President is neither black nor white": Armenia's Sarkissian rejects criticism

March 1, 2021 – 13:10 AMT

PanARMENIAN.Net – Armenian President Armen Sarkissian said on Monday, March 1 that he is not representing the interests of any political force, calling any manipulation of the matter impermissible and unacceptable. The President “is neither black, nor white,” he added.

In a statement published on Monday, March 1, Sarkissian described reactions to his refusal to dismiss the chief of Army General Staff Onik Gasparyan as “disproportionate”.

The President said he makes decisions guided solely by national interests. His most important mission, he noted, is to ensure the protection of the Constitution, to use the institution of the presidency as a platform for negotiations, to find ways to resolve the situation in the country.

“The President of the Republic has repeatedly suggested and is now reaffirming his readiness to unite the political forces around the negotiating table in order to settle the differences and find mutually acceptable solutions,” Sarkissian’s statement said.

“The President of the Republic has returned the draft decree on dismissal of the Chief of Army General Staff, Colonel-General Onik Gasparyan, with his objections, exercising his authority defined by Part 2 of Article 139 of the Constitution.”

Hours after Sarkissian returned the proposal to Pashinyan, lawmaker Vahagn Hovakimyan from the ruling My Step bloc announced that Sarkissian could be facing impeachment for the “gross violation of the Constitution”.

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