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Edited list: Armenian police say the number of voters has been decreased after being checked

Edited list: Armenian police say the number of voters has been decreased after being checked

The Passport and Visa Department of the Police of Armenia reports that as a result of checking the lists of voters the number of voters was decreased by 3,000; 2,000 are deceased and 1,000 are removed from the state registry list.

According to Hovhannes Kocharyan, head of the Passport and Visa Department of the Police, the reason why names of dead people were included on the voters’ list was that they had received insufficient data from the Civil Status Registration Office of the Ministry of Justice.

“The relatives of the dead people are also to be blamed for it, because they do not submit the information about their dead relatives to the registration office. The number of Armenians who died abroad also makes a great percentage; they are registered as dead abroad, and of course, the state registry is not informed about their death,” Kocharyan says.

He reports that they are actively working in three directions to reveal inaccuracies on the voters’ list.

“The first one is the data provided by the election headquarters of proportional and majoritarian candidates, the second one is the daily monitoring held by press, and the third one is the inaccuracies revealed by the Police,” Kocharyan says.

At the moment there are 2,482,593 citizens of Armenia, who are eligible to vote. According to the Electoral Code, all voters of Armenia before May 1 may attend polling stations, get acquainted with the voters’ list and in case of finding inaccuracies, turn to passport departments, which must fix the inaccuracies within five days.

The opposition political forces of Armenia (Armenian National Congress (ANC), Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF, Dashnaktsutyun) and Heritage Party) yet a few weeks ago started releasing statements over the voters’ list published by the Police, saying that the lists are inflated and there are evident discrepancies between the data of the voters’ list and the census.

According to the preliminary data on the 2011 census there were 2,871,000 people who actually live in Armenia. The number of registered citizens makes 3,285,000. The difference between these figures reflects the number of the people who no longer have permanent residency. If the numbers provided by the authorities are accurate, they would suggest that the total population of 18 and younger in Armenia is less than 400,000.

Opposition parties fear that the Republican Party of Armenia will use the discrepancy to justify the number of “votes” that would in fact be gained through ballot-stuffing.