The atmosphere in which the election campaign is taking place in Armenia is extremely worrying. The Human Rights Defender (Ombudsman) of the Republic of Armenia (RA), Arman Tatoyan, noted this in a statement he issued Tuesday.
"It deepens the polarization in the society, undermines the prospect of restoring solidarity in the country.
This can't go on like this!
All political forces must exclude insults and swearing, any words related to hatred and violence.
Candidates for Prime Minister of all political forces running in the [snap parliamentary] elections [on June 20] are obligated to take into account that every word they use is spread to their supporters, and then they insult and curse each other with the same words.
The figures who are considered candidates for the post of RA Prime Minister should be especially careful about the words they use, take into account all their metaphorical meanings.
Today, the promises of RA Acting Prime Minister [Nikol Pashinyan] about civil and political vendettas, civil revenge, personnel smashing, and the use of swear words are extremely worrying. It is inadmissible to bring such a vocabulary to the public domain, especially to the electoral process.
The real danger of such rhetoric is that it exacerbates the already existing tension, carries with it the dangerous risks of being transferred to real life. (…).
We repeat that the reference of the RA Human Rights Defender to the RA acting Prime Minister is made especially in consideration of the fact that in addition to political, he continues to maintain the status of the head of the RA executive power (…).
The monitoring of social media shows also that the topic of the duel between the candidate for Prime Minister of the ‘Armenia’ bloc [i.e., second President Robert Kocharyan] and the candidate for the post of Prime Minister of the [ruling] Civil Contract party, the RA acting Prime Minister, is also being discussed in the context of violence.
Apart from the above-written, during a meeting with the RA acting Prime Minister today, one of the citizens mentioned that he had been fired for not voting for—in the wording of the citizen—the ‘Armenia’ bloc's candidate for the post of Prime Minister," Tatoyan added, in particular.