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Press Review


“Aravot” runs a sarcastic commentary on the founding congress of the World Armenian Organization, wondering why it took place in Moscow, not in Yerevan. The paper comes up with its own answer to the question: “a lack of dignity” among Ara Abrahamian and other organizers of the gathering. Russians will hardly think more highly about Armenians after this, it says.

“Iravunk” says having for months shunned Kocharian, Abrahamian succeeded in ensuring Putin’s presence at the congress. “And Robert Kocharian had to show up in Moscow,” the paper says. Also noteworthy, it says, are opposition leader Artashes Geghamian’s “fairly warm” rapport with Abrahamian. Both Geghamian and another prominent oppositionist, Stepan Demirchian, were invited to the Moscow jamboree.

“Golos Armenii” says the idea of a referendum of confidence in Kocharian will remain “the main weapon” of the Armenian opposition even after the latest remarks by the Constitutional Court chairman, Gagik Harutiunian. The opposition will continue to use it for heightening political tensions in the country. “The Constitutional Court chairman gave the opposition a powerful weapon and regardless of everything the opposition can destabilize the situation with it,” the paper comments. “This will not be difficult to do against the backdrop of the upcoming increase in prices.”

But according to “Hayots Ashkhar,” the opposition’s case for a referendum suffered a blow from the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe which avoided imposing any sanctions on Armenia. The opposition will now try to exploit the planned rise in the prices of basic utilities. But, the paper says, it will fail to capitalize on the highly unpopular measures.

“Haykakan Zhamanak” looks the Armenian parliament’s September 22 decision to include on its agenda an opposition proposal to compensate those Armenians who lost their savings in the early 1990s. The decision was made over objections of Prime Minister Andranik Markarian’s Republican Party (HHK) which has the largest faction in the National Assembly. The move was backed by 67 deputies of the 131-member assembly. This, according to the paper, means that Markarian and his Republicans do not have a majority in the parliament. The premier may thus be easily overthrown if “certain forces” wish so. The paper claims that the “conspiracy” against Markarian is hatched by Defense Minister Serzh Sarkisian and the leader of the HHK’s parliament faction, Galust Sahakian.

“Andranik Markarian is failing to stop Dashnaktsutyun’s advance in the government pyramid,” “Haykakan Zhamanak” continues. “Besides, there has effectively been formed a new inner-government format, a coalition council in which Serzh Sarkisian has practically no involvement. This can not fail to worry the defense minister whose political longevity depends on the following: to know everything and have an influence everywhere.”

(Vache Sarkisian)
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