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Armenians vote in constitutional referendum

[JURIST] Citizens in the former Soviet republic of Armenia [government website] voted Sunday on constitutional amendments to impose stricter separation of powers between the judicial, executive and legislative branches. The amendments also remove a clause in the Armenian constitution [text] barring Armenian citizens from obtaining dual citizenship. The US and EU support the constitutional amendments which will strengthen democracy, but a similar set of amendments failed to win approval in a 2003 referendum [election results]. The opposition boycotted Sunday’s referendum because they claimed their proposals were not considered, and the amendments give President Robert Kocharian [official website] too much power. Last week the opposition held a protest that gathered just over 1,000 people, and accused Kocharian of corruption and failing to improve Armenia’s poor economy. The referendum requires support from at least one third of Armenia’s 2.2 million citizens. AP has more. Armenia Liberty, an advocacy group, has additional coverage.

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