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Armenia's Ruling Party Names Parliament Speaker

Armenia's Republican Party (HHK), which won last month’s parliamentary elections, has proposed former Health Minister Ara Babloyan for the position of parliament speaker.

The proposal came from President Serzh Sarkisian, who is also the leader of the HHK, at a meeting of the HHK executive body on May 17 in Yerevan.

HHK spokesperson Eduard Sharmazanov, who is deputy speaker of the outgoing parliament, and former Justice Minister Arpine Hovannisian have been proposed as deputy speakers.

Sharmazanov, who spoke to the media after the party meeting, said all nominations were approved unanimously.

The new parliament will convene on May 18, as the outgoing government presents its resignation.

The HHK has said it will propose that incumbent Prime Minister Karen Karapetian continue in office.

In the latest elections, the HHK retained its parliamentary majority and currently has 58 seats in the 105-member legislative body. Together with its junior coalition partner, Dashnaktsutyun, which has seven mandates, the ruling party also enjoys a constitutional majority.

The second-largest parliamentary faction, formed by the Tsarukian Alliance, which has 31 seats, also named its candidates for leadership positions in the National Assembly.

The bloc is entitled to one deputy parliament speaker and is going to nominate Mikael Melkumian for the position.