Armenian Prez rejects motion to dismiss Army chief

Armenian President Armen Sarkissian has again rejected Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan’s motion on dismissing Onik Gasparyan, the Chief of the Army’s General Staff.

In an official statement on its website, the President’s Office said on Tuesday that Sarkissian decided not to sign the draft decree, but he will apply to the Constitutional Court to determine the issue, reports Xinhua news agency.

“Faithful to his commitment, the President will continue steps aiming at further stabilizing the situation, and, by serving the institute of the president as a platform, is calling on everyone to negotiate to find a comprehensive solution to all existing problems,” said the statement.

It is the second time that the Armenian President turned down the motion on dismissing Gasparyan since February 25.

Pashinyan on February 25 sacked Gasparyan, accusing him of attempting a military coup, after the latter, his deputies and dozens of top military commanders signed a statement, demanding the Prime Minister and his cabinet to resign.

However, the Prime Minister’s order needs a formal approval from the presidency.

According to Armenian law, the President has three days to either approve a motion from the Prime Minister or return it with objections.

But if the motion is sent to the President again, he will have to choose to sign it or apply to the Constitutional Court.