[QODLink]
Europe

Armenia presidential hopeful shot in capital

Paruyr Hayrikyan has been wounded by unknown gunmen in Yerevan, in an attack that could delay February's elections.
Last Modified: 01 Feb 2013 02:52
Hayrikyan, a former dissident, is leader of moderate opposition party, National Self-Determination Union [Al Jazeera]

An Armenian presidential candidate has been shot and wounded by unknown gunmen in the capital Yerevan, police said, in an attack that could delay February's election.

"It will depend on Paruir Airikian's condition whether the election will be postponed or not"

- Hovik Abrahamyan, 
Parliamentary speaker

Paruyr Hayrikyan, whose life was not in danger after Thursday's shooting, is one of eight candidates running in the February 18 vote, but is not seen as a strong challenger to Serzh Sarksyan, who is expected to be re-elected for a second five-year term.

However, according to Armenia's constitution, the election could be postponed by two weeks if a candidate is unable to campaign or run. In the event of a candidate's death, a new election is called, to be held within 40 days.

The 2008 presidential election in Armenia - a landlocked ex-Soviet republic of 3.2 million that is Russia's main ally in the South Caucasus - were marred by violent clashes between opposition protesters and police.

"Those, who did it, wanted to destabilise the situation in the country, but they failed," Hovik Abrahamyan, the parliamentary speaker, told reporters.

"It will depend on Paruyr Hayrikyan's condition whether the election will be postponed or not," he said.

'Two shots fired'

Armenian Shans TV reported that gunmen fired two shots, wounding Hayrikyan with a bullet to his shoulder, in the
courtyard of his house in the centre of the capital.

He was taken to hospital after his neighbours, who heard shots and found him, called police and an ambulance.

"[Unknown gunmen] were shooting at the presidential candidate Paruyr Hayrikyan ... Doctors say his life is not in
danger," Vladimir Gasparyan, the head of the country's police department, told reporters at the hospital in comments aired by Shans TV.

Hayrikyan, 63, a former dissident, is the leader of a moderate opposition party, the National Self-Determination Union.

357

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Colleagues of detained Al Jazeera journalists press demands for their release, 100 days after their arrest in Egypt.
Mehdi Hasan discusses online freedoms and the potential of the web with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
A tight race seems likely as 814 million voters elect leaders in world's largest democracy next week.
Featured
Deadly attacks on anti-mining activists in the Philippines part of a global trend, according to new report.
Activists say 'Honor Diaries' documentary exploits gender-based violence to further an anti-Islamic agenda.
As Syria's civil war escalates along the Turkish border, many in Turkey are questioning the country's involvement.
Treatment for autism in the region has progressed, but lack of awareness and support services remains a challenge.
The past isn't far away for a people exiled from Crimea by Russia and the decades it took to get home.
join our mailing list