A former aide to ex-president Levon Ter-Petrossian writes in “Azg” that the attempt to bring about a Turkish-Armenian rapprochement is part of the OSCE Minsk Group’s efforts to establish peace and stability in the entire region. Ktrich Sardarian claims that the initiative is supported not only by the United States but Russia as well. He says the majority of Armenian political parties which have condemned the creation of the reconciliation commission are displaying “collective irresponsibility towards new political realities.” The Armenian political elite is still guided by “old approaches.” “Establishment of relations with Turkey and eradication of the centuries-old enmity is a necessity for Armenia’s political future. The more so given Russia’s positive attitude to that issue. Russia’s position represents a historic shift, which we must use in a right way,” he concludes.
“Zhamanak” points to National Democratic Union leader Vazgen Manukian’s remark that the current Armenian parliament is “terminally ill” and will not be cured by the recent defections from the HZhK. Manukian at the same time said on Tuesday that he is against fresh parliamentary elections, arguing that they would not be “meaningful” at this point.
“Hayots Ashkhar” compares the National Assembly to a boat which is trying to cross a river. Its crew has at last dared to set sail but lacks the “ability and resolve” to make it to the opposite bank. The paper clearly refers to speaker Armen Khachatrian and his deputy Gagik Aslanian who last month quit the HZhK along with seven other lawmakers. One of them, Gagik Voskanian, says the defectors are “thinking about” forming a new political party. He claims that they have many sympathizers in the HZhK ranks.
“Aravot” reports that former prime minister Aram Sarkisian has criticized the government’s decision to re-structure his Ararat Cement factory, a prelude to its impending privatization. Sarkisian believes that the government has deliberately made it difficult for workers to take over their state-run factory. The ex-premier says he will take part in the international tender for Ararat Cement and has “advised” other potential contenders not to stand in his way. The paper adds for its part the government has set the company’s minimum sale price at $8 million, far higher than $700,000 paid by the Mika Limited company (rumored to be close to Defense Minister Serzh Sarkisian) for another cement factory located in the central town of Hrazdan. Mika bought it without a tender.
The director of the Metsamor nuclear plant, Suren Azatian, backs his employees’ demands for the payment of their back wages but rejects as “irresponsible” their threats to go on strike. “Hayots Ashkhar” quotes Azatian as saying that the latest strongly-worded statement by the Metsamor personnel was incited by some “trouble makers” carrying out orders of unnamed “external forces.”