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Press Review


"Aravot" says Yerevan's Zvartnots airport has found itself on the verge of bankruptcy due to government mismanagement. The authorities, the paper says, have "applied their classical system of clan-based management to aviation as well." Argentina's Eduardo Eurnekian can save the airport from collapse only if he runs it without the interference of "local oligarchs."

"Iravunk" is alarmed that Armenia's "entire legislation is being adapted to the whims of Diaspora Armenian businesspeople." The authorities are thereby creating more "monopolist monsters." "If we look at the essence of the privileges granted to Eurnekian and [Armenian-American millionaire Gerard] Cafesjian, we will see the creation of huge and hugely profitable economic domains to be dominated by those Diaspora Armenian entrepreneurs. That domination, in essence, will not differ from the mechanism of clan-based monopolies that are effectively ruling Armenia. Armenia-born oligarchs use privileges without a law, while Eurnekian and the Cafesjians will do so in a quasi-legalized manner," the paper writes. This, according to "Iravunk," accelerates the process of Armenia's "clanization." It can be reversed only with a "systemic change of government."

"Hayots Ashkhar" shrugs off Azerbaijan's periodical threats to win back Karabakh by force, saying that the Azerbaijani army will not be able to mount a "serious campaign" in the years to come. Nor will Turkey be allowed to "cross the Arax river." "Therefore, the main trump card of the Turkish-Azerbaijani military alliance is the use of economic and communication advantages - not military and political - in order to dictate conditions to Armenia," the paper says. So the main challenge confronting Armenia is an economic one. It requires a "really nationwide economic mobilization with the 'now-or-never' slogan." This should be the main subject of the upcoming Armenia-Diaspora conference.

"Orran" (Cradle), the newly created newspaper of former foreign minister Raffi Hovannisian, expresses in its first issue disappointment with Monday's televised dialogue between President Robert Kocharian and a group of Armenians in Los Angeles and Moscow. "The framework of pan-Armenian issues was never ascertained," the paper says. "Unfortunately, the fact is that such issues do not exist today." Diaspora investments in Armenia should be one of those issues. But given the existence of a "clan system" and rampant corruption in Armenia, "any investment would quickly end up in the pockets of several officials." The eradication of that clan system is therefore the main precondition for Diaspora investments, which "automatically means a change of government." "And this is not a pan-Armenian issue. It's an issue that has to be addressed by the citizens of the Republic of Armenia." The same is true for the resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, according to "Orran."

(Vache Sarkisian)
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