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YEREVAN, December 6. /TASS/. Voting has begun in Armenia in a referendum on the Constitutional reform, according to which the country is to go over to the parliamentary form of government. A total of 1,997 polling stations opened across the country at 8 a.m. local time (7 a.m. Moscow Time).
Despite the cold weather in the cities and especially in rural areas, there are many people at the polling stations, mostly senior citizens, who want to express their attitude towards the proposed reform. "Do you agree with the draft amendments to the Constitution of Armenia?" - that’s the only question the voters will have to answer.
The elections are monitored by about 100 observers from various countries and international organizations, including the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and the CIS Inter-Parliamentary Assembly. The voting will last until 8 p.m. local time (7 p.m. Moscow Time). The preliminary results are expected to be published on Monday, and the final ones - on Sunday, December 13.
The amendments to the Constitution have been initiated by Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan. After forwarding the draft reform to legislators, he held a series of consultations with most political parties of the country. According to Sargsyan, the reform "will make cooperation between different branches of government more effective, establish the basis for the country’s more intensive economic development, increase the level of human rights protection and boost the institutional role of the opposition.".