By Mark Dovich
The Hanrapetutyun Party (Republic Party) was formed in 2001 by former members of the Republican Party (Hanrapetakan Kusaktsutyun) and the Yerkrapah (Defenders of the Land) Volunteer Union, a group of veterans of the First Karabakh War of the 1990s. Aram Sargsyan has served as the party’s leader since its founding. The party has not enjoyed representation in the legislature since the 2018 elections. In this month’s vote, the party is running under the slogan “Jobs, security” (Ashkhatategher, anvtangutyun).
Heading the Slate: Aram Sargsyan
Longtime leader Aram Sargsyan is a former prime minister (1999-2000) and the younger brother of Vazgen Sargsyan, himself a former prime minister (1999) and defense minister (1991-1992, 1995-1999). Vazgen Sargsyan was among eight politicians assassinated in the Armenian parliament shooting of October 27, 1999.
In 2017, the party ran in alliance with Nikol Pashinyan’s Civil Contract and Edmon Marukyan’s Bright Armenia as the Way Out alliance (Yelk Dashink). Collectively, the three parties won 9 of 105 seats in that election. The Hanrapetutyun Party left the alliance after the 2018 Velvet Revolution and failed to garner enough votes in that year’s parliamentary elections to enter the National Assembly.
Earlier this week, Sargsyan gave a speech outlining the Hanrapetutyun Party’s platform for the upcoming vote. Stating that his main priority is to “use all the resources of the country to eliminate the threat to statehood,” he called for the government to increase funding for the sciences, improve the country’s investment climate, strengthen the armed forces, and make better use of Armenia’s natural resources.