GAROYAN WRITES HISTORY
Marios Garoyan becomes the first Cypriot Armenian to be elected in
the Cyprus Parliament. Garoyan won a seat (Democratic Party (DIKO)
of President Tassos Papadopoulos) in the Nicosia district.
Unfortunately M.Sarkissian (communist AKEL) did not manage to win in
the Limassol disctrict.
Most of the parties comprising the ruling coalition administration
gained ground in Cyprus’ parliamentary elections Sunday, but the
island’s two main rival parties lost seats and a smaller party chief
resigned after he failed to enter the House of Representatives.
In all, 487 candidates challenged the 56 seats in parliament, a mainly
legislative and non-executive body, while the island-state’s president
is elected directly by the people.
The main coalition partner, the communist AKEL, shed 3.4 percentage
points from its voters and polled 31.2 per cent of the votes, entering
parliament with 18 deputies, two less than in the previous assembly,
while the opposition party Democratic Rally (DISY) won 30.3 per cent
of the votes, shedding 3.7 percentage points to lose a seat and will
now have 18 deputies in the House.
The clear winner in these elections is the Democratic Party (DIKO)
of President Tassos Papadopoulos that raised its voter strength
by three percentage points to 17.9 per cent and gained a new seat,
rising to 10 deputies.
Political analysts say that this outcome will also boost Papadopoulos
party which will have enough public support to seek a second term
in office in 2008, while coalition partner AKEL, though still the
biggest party, has now lesser chances of putting forward its own
candidate for president.
The social-democrat EDEK, which has two ministers in Papadopoulos’
present cabinet, also improved despite earlier predictions of a
loss, earning 8.9 per cent of the votes and five seats, gaining one
The European Party (Evroko) – created by four deputies who left DISY
two years ago and merged with the nationalist New Horizons and the
single-seat ADIK – recorded a marginal gain to 5.7 per cent with four
seats in the new parliament.
The Green Party/Ecologist Movement made no gains, ending the day with
1.9 per cent of the vote and just one seat, while the party had been
hopeful it would get a second deputy.
The United Democrats (EDI) of former president George Vassiliou was
the biggest loser of the day, failing to reach the threshold of 1.8
per cent in order to enter the House of Representatives.
The party’s present president, Michalis Papapetrou, handed in his
resignation and called for an early party congress in June to elect
a new leadership.
‘It’s a shame that our policies were not accepted by the public,’
Papapetrou said, referring to EDI’s open support of the United Nations
peace plan, dubbed the Annan Plan, that was rejected by the majority
of the Greek Cypriot community in April 2004.