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Press Review


The latest visit to the region by the Minsk Group co-chairs ended on a pessimistic note. This is the unanimous conclusion of Tuesday's Armenian newspapers.

"The mediators' optimism and pessimism go hand in hand," writes "Azg." "They have simply failed to reconcile two extremely irreconcilable things: to resolve the Karabakh conflict and ensure transfer of power in Azerbaijan from Aliev to his son."

"Aravot" says, citing "reliable sources," that the co-chairs have decided to "freeze" the peace process for the time being. The Geneva talks, on which many had pinned big hopes, have been postponed. They will most probably take place in September.

"Hayots Ashkhar" notes that the negotiating troika was much more optimistic at the end of the talks in Key West than it is now. But no one should be surprised with the continuing absence of a breakthrough. Conditions in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Karabakh are not yet ripe for peace. The paper does not find this fact particularly worrying, sticking to its position that the Armenian side should not rush to achieve a compromise settlement with Azerbaijan. It says any Armenian leader committed to liberal economics sooner or later will have to accept conditions set by the West. Therefore, the challenge for the country is to embark on a "radical overhaul of external economic relations" in order to "create an economic alternative for
our survival." In practice, this means being linked to Russia economically as well.

"Hayastani Komunist" has a different issue on top of its agenda, the
Russia-Belarus union. Its message to the authorities is clear and simple. "You, President Robert Kocharian, must realize that they, the people, denounce your political short-sightedness and order you to receive highest awards of cooperation and loyalty primarily from leaders of countries that bring peoples together and build bridges of fraternal cooperation."

"Aravot" has the first reaction from Kocharian to the calls for a
parliamentary inquiry into allegations that some governing circles secretly help the jailed parliament attackers. Presidential spokesman Vahe Gabrielian says the statement by the People's Party of Armenia and the Yerkrapah Union is an attempt to politicize the continuing trial of the gunmen, which has not lived up to "some people's expectations." The paper is also against the idea of the inquiry, saying that the creation of an ad hoc parliamentary would "go against common sense" and be seen as pressure on the judiciary.

Vache Sarkisian
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