“Hayots Ashkhar” says that Levon Ter-Petrosian’s possible decision to run for president would further split the already divided Armenian opposition. The paper says the People’s and Hanrapetutyun parties will form a “tandem” and will face a “fateful dilemma: to support Ter-Petrosian or act with their own candidate: Stepan Demirchian.” Either way, they will alienate many supporters. The pro-presidential daily concludes, saying that if the HZhK and Hanrapetutyun side with the ex-president, several other members of the 16-party opposition coalition will rally around Artashes Geghamian.
“Azg” also makes the point that it is the opposition, not Robert Kocharian, that will lose from Ter-Petrosian’s participation in the elections. “Ter-Petrosian does not have a stable electorate. He will be seen as an alternative to Kocharian, a representative of the radical opposition. That means he will take away votes not from Kocharian, the main cause of Ter-Petrosian’s  exit, but the opposition.” The paper renews in this regard attacks on Prime Minister Andranik Markarian’s Republican Party (HHK). It is very unhappy with HHK leader Galust Sahakian’s remark that only Kocharian and Ter-Petrosian deserve to contest the elections. “In effect, Galust Sahakian confirmed the overall belief that only in case of Ter-Petrosian’s nomination that Kocharian will not have seriously trouble getting reelected in the first round, which is…very dangerous. Thus, the Republican Party does not stop paying lip services to the president.”
“Aravot” takes the view that Kocharian stands no chance of winning in the first round of voting. He couldn’t manage that even in 1998 when he “was not accountable for the past.” “Five years on, Kocharian will not lavish promises anymore, but will be held accountable for the past, having no answers to many acute questions.” So confident is the paper of Kocharian’s defeat that it focuses on a possible showdown between Ter-Petrosian and HZhK leader Stepan Demirchian. It says the latter would be more likely to win the ballot. The recent HZhK congress demonstrated that most opposition parties are willing to see Demirchian as their leader.
But “Orran” cautions that the opposition must do make “very serious and consistent” efforts to stave off a vote rigging and beat Kocharian. “The opposition is simply obliged to put forward new ideas,” the pro-opposition daily says.