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Armenia Names New Labor Minister

Artur Grigorian
Artur Grigorian
YEREVAN -- Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian has appointed a new minister of labor and social affairs, RFE/RL's Armenian Service reports.

Artur Grigorian, 40, was nominated by the Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK), a junior partner in Sarkisian's governing coalition.

Grigorian is the third person to hold the post in little more than a year. He replaces Mkhitar Mnatsakanian, another BHK figure who unexpectedly resigned last week after only seven months in office.

Mnatsakanian said in a June 23 interview with the daily "Aravot" that it was due to a "sense of dissatisfaction with my work and its results."

Mnatsakanian was appointed as labor minister in November to replace BHK member Gevorg Petrosian, who quit under pressure from the party and its leader for unknown reasons.

Prime Minister Tigran Sarkisian said on June 29 that Grigorian has been affiliated with the BHK since 2006. "The government and I personally will support the minister in smoothly getting down to business," he added.

"I am ready and determined," Grigorian said. "We will try to do everything possible to solve [the numerous problems facing the ministry]."

Grigorian had previously been in a senior position at the parliament's audit chamber.