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Press Review


“Hayots Ashkhar” says what happened in the Armenian parliament in the past several weeks looked more like an election campaign than legislative work. As the summer recess approached deputies were anxious to please their voters with various populist initiatives. But doing that could also have negative “side effects.” People don’t care who will make their life better. Too much zeal on the part of the deputies could have opposite effects.

“Yerkir” keeps the government and the Miasnutyun bloc under fire for the defeat of the Dashnak bill on pensions. The Dashnak paper accuses the government of rejecting “any sensible proposal” that comes from other political forces. It says the Miasnutyun opposition to the pension increase was politically motivated. There is no lack of money in Armenia as is claimed by the government. It will take a “strengthening of state authority and consistency” to get it.

“Hayots Ashkhar” renews its call for the “freezing” of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict in view of “military-political realities favorable to us.” The status quo does benefit the Armenian side. The paper remains convinced that the Geneva talks were postponed due to disagreements between Russia and the United States. This week’s between Presidents Bush and Putin and is therefore critical for the future of the peace process.

“Zhamanak” denounces Russian State Duma speaker Gennady Seleznev over his remark that Karabakh can join the Russia-Belarus union together with Armenia. The pro-government paper urges Armenia’s political elite to display “vigilance” in the face of such “external provocations.” The problem is that part of that elite “serves Russian interests” in Armenia.

“Iravunk” suspects that Seleznev’s controversial statements were agreed with NKR President Arkady Ghukasian beforehand. The nationalist paper, which is openly hostile to the current authorities in Stepanakert, alleges that Ghukasian struck a secret deal with the Russians without Yerevan’s knowledge. This fact reflects growing friction between the Armenian and Karabakh authorities. Ghukasian, in particular, seeks to offset his low popularity by “nervous steps” in the international arena.

State prosecutors involved in the parliament shootings inquiry believe that demands for transferring Nairi Hunanian to the interior ministry prison are not justified, “Haykakan Zhamanak” reports. The commander of a special security regiment guarding top criminals in Armenia, Colonel Mikael Abrahamian, agrees with them.

(Vache Sarkisian)
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