“Aravot” writes that President Kocharian’s seemingly impromptu news briefings during visits to the country’s region are in fact carefully planned. His every attack on the opposition, backed up by some official figures, is calculated in advance. The paper dismisses Kocharian’s accusations directed at former prime minister Aram Sarkisian and former Yerevan mayor Albert Bazeyan. It was, after all, the president who had appointed the two men to senior government posts. And he did so only in his own interests. For all his scornful statements about the Armenian opposition, Kocharian has to spend some of his energy on keeping it at bay.
“Azg” is bewildered that law-enforcement agencies are not going to take any action over Kocharian’s corruption allegations regarding Sarkisian and Bazeyan. The allegations were very serious and must be investigated, according to the paper. But Kocharian instead urged journalists to do the job.
“Aravot” and “Haykakan Zhamanak” report that HZhK leader Stepan Demirchian pins great hopes on the October 26 rally organized by Armenia’s three leading opposition parties. Demirchian on Friday faced calls for a more assertive campaign against Kocharian’s regime at a meeting with hundreds of supporters in Yerevan.
For “Azg,” the key question is whether the opposition will publicize at the rally names of those parliament deputies who have signed its petition to launch impeachment proceedings against Kocharian. The opposition has to do that in order to show its supporters that the impeachment campaign is not a gimmick.
“Hayots Ashkhar” says the Armenian Communist Party (HKK) may be heading for another split amid an intensifying leadership struggle. At least three leading Communists would like to replace the party’s elderly first secretary, Vladimir Darpinian. The paper quotes one unidentified Communist activist as saying: “We will soon witness a third division of the HKK unless those Communists who are not indifferent to the party’s fate demand an emergency congress.”
“Hayastani Hanrapetutyun” carries an interview with the Georgian ambassador to Armenia, Nikoloz Nikolozishvili, ahead of President Eduard Shevardnadze’s visit to Armenia due next week. The envoy says Shevardnadze’s visit to “a fraternal country” will “play a decisive role in deepening relations between our countries.” “Interests of third countries can not affect our bilateral relationship,” Nikolozishvili says. He also assures Armenians that socioeconomic problems facing Georgia’s Javakhetia region remain “in the center of the Georgian authorities’ attention.”