Nikol Pashinyan’s Speech at Rally Summarizing Early Parliamentary Election Results
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Proud citizens of the Republic of Armenia,
I greet you all.
To tell the truth, there was a heated debate in our political team as to whether we should hold today’s rally or not, because as you may have noticed many of us standing on this platform are sleepy.
I am convinced that many of you did not sleep well until dawn as you followed the count of votes all night long, but in the end we decided that the scheduled rally could not be canceled, because we had agreed that we should come together on June 21 to complete the ongoing conversation. I do not like half-hearted talks, and we are hereby summing up the conversation underway since the first day of the campaign.
What were we saying? We said that our people would demonstrate that they represent the supreme power in the country and they did so. The polls showed that the Civil Contract party, that is, the people, won in Syunik, Vayots Dzor, Ararat, Armavir, Shirak, Aragatsotn, Lori, Tavush, Gegharkunik, even in Kotayk marz and Yerevan. We won in Yerevan, Gyumri, Vanadzor, Kapan, Goris, Meghri, Idjevan, Etchmiadzin, Armavir.
And as a matter of fact, we stated what we had promised. Today, we have come together to summarize the electoral campaign and the polls. I hope we can actually state that the internal political crisis that started on November 9 is over, and we will be back to work tomorrow. But we must state that the overall backdrop and the environment have changed significantly, because the people of the Republic of Armenia gave a mandate to our government, our political team to enforce the rule of law in the country. The people of Armenia carried out a “steel” revolution.
At the same time, I would like to state that we have held snap parliamentary elections in Armenia for the second time after the revolution, which according to international and local observers met the standards of democracy and were completely legal. The observers, however, singled out a detail we all know, namely that some aggressive rhetoric was used during this campaign: I do not even want us to say who started it, when and why?
I want to say something else. I wish to appeal to all the participants of the political and public process. The people of Armenia have made their decision; the people of Armenia have built a new political situation. And the first point of the proposed destination is as follows: I suggest all political forces starting afresh from a simple point, namely to give up the practice of swearing.
First of all, I call on our political supporters and partisans to put an end to swearing, since a new chapter is being written in the history of Armenia and Artsakh, and we must start editing that chapter by mobilizing the pan-Armenian and national potential, by introducing new values and reaffirming our national values.
First of all, yes, I say that perhaps for objective or subjective reasons, I myself failed to abide by that logic, but I am the first to make such a commitment, and I call on all our supporters to give up the practice of swearing, unnecessary aggressiveness and hatred, because we are facing serious challenges, we must usher in a wonderful new chapter in our state-building effort. This does not mean, however, that we will relinquish any of our previous commitments. No. The reinstatement of legality, public order and responsibility is a must in Armenia. And I make the second offer to the participants in public and political life. You know that the need to return what was stolen from the people has always been high on our agenda.
I want you to note the following nuance: we did not take anything from anyone in the past three years, although we could. We wished to build such state institutions as would be free from the whims of individuals. A mechanism of confiscation of ill-earned assets has been launched, which is sure to work. But proceeding from the logic of my previous proposal, I would like to remind that we have amended the applicable legislation so that those facing similar problems could have the opportunity to negotiate with the state over the return of stolen property.
I call on all these people not to miss the opportunity. I call for immediate talks over the return of embezzled public assets, which will serve the socio-economic agenda of the Republic of Armenia. Starting tomorrow, I will initiate political consultations with those political forces participating in the parliamentary elections that are open to dialogue and collaboration. And I hope that the people will empower me to consolidate our best cultural, scientific, economic, business and political potential to serve the nation’s security and wellbeing, including Artsakh.
I am hereby addressing my call for a dialogue to all those structures and social segments with which we have been in opposition during this period. We are now extending a hand of solidarity, emphasizing that it can in no way call into question our commitment to the people to exercise the “steel” mandate, the rule of law in Armenia.
I call for a spiritual dialogue with the clergy, because I believe that “the voice of the people is the voice of God” (Vox populi, vox Dei), and no one has the right to oppose the people’s willpower. And we, yes, must renew the spiritual life in our country as well, since we used to be short of only one thing to make our dreams come true: faith was not enough for a grain of mustard. We must regenerate that faith in our hearts, in our consciousness if we are to build a happy country, a free and happy homeland.
You saw that, unfortunately, some people again tried to sow contradictions among the Armenians living in Armenia and Artsakh for their narrow political goals. I wish to say that it is inadmissible. The people of Armenia, the Government of Armenia have always supported and will stand by Artsakh, and I want you to reaffirm with applause that we are fully committed to our brothers and sisters in Artsakh and as I said in my previous speeches, we will advocate a fair resolution of the Artsakh issue through the formula of “remedial secession.”
Needless to say, the Armenian government implemented dozens of measures following the disastrous war. No resident of Artsakh was left without support. The people and the government of Armenia stood by the people of Artsakh, and together we must defy any attempt to sow discord between us.
In cooperation with the Government of Artsakh, the Government of Armenia and the Diaspora have launched an AMD 100 billion-worth investment program in Artsakh, which covers housing, infrastructure etc. It is more than the total of investments made in Artsakh since 1990. I mean the investments made through the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund.
I want to believe, I am convinced that the people who had warmed their hands for many years on the Armenian-Karabakh conflict and filled their pockets will not be able to do so any longer. Do not try to sow discord between the residents of Artsakh and those living in Armenia. Any such attempt is doomed to failure.
Dear people, our last pledge was left unfinished. During the previous rally, I wrapped up my speech with the following remarks: I said, we will gather here on June 21 and we will chant “Armenia.” Many people thought that I had made a mistake by chanting the name of a political rival. No, that was not the case, since Armenia is not the name of our political competitor; it is the name of our homeland.
Armenia is our name. Armenia is the name of every Armenian. I mean that with this victory we will return the name of Armenia to every citizen of the Republic of Armenia, to every Armenian, and therefore, let us all chant: “Hay-yas-tan! Hay-yas-tan! Hay-yas-tan!”
Dear people, the political crisis is over in Armenia. We all need to return to daily work in a bid to build a better future for our children, support our brothers and sisters in the Artsakh Republic, strengthen our armed forces, reform our army, develop the economy, build the promised 500 kindergartens, 300 schools, 2,600 kilometers of roads, record at least 7% economic growth, step up the budget receipts, develop our country and enrich the citizens of Armenia. There is no other way.
I told you that there would be no post-election process. There is no post-election process, because we managed to hold high-standard, free and fair elections. We just need to face the decision made by the people. Today is the Day of Police Troops of the Republic of Armenia. On this very day we used to hold ceremonious events at Police Headquarters to congratulate the policemen on their professional holiday. Many of them are here, and I wish to congratulate and greet them with applause.
I would like to note that the law enforcement agencies - Police, Police Troops, National Security Service, State Security Service, Office of Prosecutor-General, Special Investigation Service, Investigative Committee, law-courts – have ensured the people’s right to free choice. And yes, we should appreciate their work.
Please let us greet them with applause. It turns out that today is also Medical Workers’ Day, thank you, dear medical workers, for your services rendered during this challenging time.
Many police officers and medical workers took a great share in the 44-day war, in the defense of our homeland, many of them were killed. I think it makes sense to respect the memory of all the martyrs of all our time in silence on the occasion of Medical Worker’s Day.
The citizens of the Republic of Armenia reaffirmed that there is a future in the Republic of Armenia; there is a future! I love you all; I am proud of all of you and bow down to you.
Long live freedom!
Long live the Republic of Armenia!
Long live us and our children who will live in a free and happy Armenia, in a free and happy Artsakh.
Dear people, once again you had the upper hand. You won this election by stating that you are the owners of the country: the citizen of the Republic of Armenia is the owner of our country.
A solemn ceremony took place during the rally: a representative of the people handed a “steel mandate” to the “newly elected Prime Minister.” The emblematic mandate has the form of the Constitution of the Republic of Armenia.
Nikol Pashinyan - Yes, we have already noted that this mandate implies that a dictatorship of law, the rule of law is being established in the Republic of Armenia by the will of the people.
From this very moment, we are fully committed to implementing this mandate. Yes, there is a hammer, a sword and a shovel in this mandate; this mandate features everything we need to build a free, happy and powerful Armenia. Thank you for granting us this mandate. Believe me: we will serve it to you, to the citizen of the Republic of Armenia, the Republic of Armenia and the Republic of Artsakh. And again, I love you all, I am proud of each one of you and I bow to you all.