YEREVAN (Yerkir)-Armenian presidential candidate and Armenian Revolutionary Federation Bureau member Vahan Hovannesian Wednesday told the NATO information office that Armenia’s current relations with NATO should be strengthened.
Hovanessian stressed that NATO and other international organizations should include Armenia-Turkish relations, as well as containing Azerbaijan’s recent escalation of military rhetoric on their respective agendas.
In other news, Hovannesian told a press conference Tuesday that Armenian Villagers are worried that local authorities will not allow them to vote through secret ballots. Corrupt officials are frightening Armenia’s into voting for a specific candidate and the Armenian Revolutionary Federation will not tolerate any infringement on the citizens’ rights to vote by secret ballot, Hovannesian said.
"Do not believe those who tell you they can check how you voted on your ballots," he advised. "Don’t be frightened, they are lying when they say that camera’s will be recording who you vote for."
"You must be strong. Voting by secret ballot is your right and you must defend it," he exclaimed. "You do not have to show your ballot’s to anybody."
According to Hovannesian, much misinformation is being circulated throughout the rural regions of the country. Citizens are misinformed about the voting process and the various candidates running for president.
False rumors that Hovannesian will give all his votes to the pro-government candidate have been circulated throughout the northern regions of the country. This is an absolute lie, Hovannesian assured.
"I would like to say right off the bat, that these rumors circulated across the country are a lie. I will not ask my supporters to vote for any of the candidates in case of a run-off because I am sure if there is a second round I will be in it," he stated.
Public opinion polls by international organizations are biased and untrustworthy, according to Hovannesian. The figures provided by pollsters, he said, do not convey the reality on the ground.
More than 170,000 registered voters have already signed agreemen’s with Hovannesian and the ARF, and this number continues to grow, Hovannesian added.
Hovannesian also commented on former president Levon Ter-Petrosian’s recent pledge to cut the size of the army from 60,000 to 10,000. Ter-petrosian’s promise is very dangerous and would jeopardize the security of Armenia and her people, if realized.