Coordinator of the Armenian National Congress Gyumri office Murad Grigoryan told the Armenian service of RFE/RL that their party has decided not to nominate a candidate for the mayoral elections in Gyumri.
This decision was expected. The RPA and PAP have agreed on Samvel Balasanyan’s candidacy and left Congress out of game. The ANC’s hope to stay in was the PAP but this party chose the RPA, so the Congress had to keep away.
Many say Gyumri mayoral elections will be a pilot project for the upcoming presidential elections in Armenia. For example, the Congress coordinator in Gyumri thinks so too adding that the excitement is artificial. “It is meant to distract attention… A pilot scenario for the  February elections will be tested.”
So, if the presidential elections are held by the same logic, the Armenian National Congress will again be left out of the game. If the RPA agrees with the PAP for the presidential elections, the Congress will have to follow the process from the outside.
But it is not certain whether the Gyumri election is a test of the presidential elections or not.
The point is that the factors affecting the logic of the presidential elections are numerous and influential. Only these factors are enough to distinguish the logic of the presidential elections to from any local self-governmental elections.
But this does not increase the political chances of the ANC. It is already clear that the main players in the presidential elections will be Serzh Sargsyan and the Prosperous Armenia Party. The choice of the PAP representative will depend on external circumstances and foreign influence.
What will prompt the Prosperous Armenia? In this context, it will perhaps become clear how the PAP will need the ANC.
If Russia does not encourage the PAP for abrupt steps and is able to agree with the West on Armenia at least for an interim period, the Armenian National Congress will be left out of the game even in the presidential elections.
If Moscow is, nevertheless, unable to agree with the West and does not trust Serzh Sargsyan, the Congress may be a very important partner for the PAP, even a force-majeure stimulator.