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Press Review


“It is evident that the government has mobilized all of its resources to obtain Moscow’s backing,” writes “Iravunk.” “On his return from Moscow Robert Kocharian was able to declare that he enjoys Vladimir Putin’s backing in the confrontation with the opposition. Traces of such solidarity were also visible in the stance taken by Russian Defense Minister Ivanov. He stated right at the [Yerevan] airport that he will be negotiating with his ‘colleague and friend’ Serzh Sarkisian.” The paper says the Russian support will inevitably come “at the expense of Armenia’s sovereignty.”

But, “Iravunk” continues, that backing “does not mean a carte blanche to destroy the [Armenian] opposition” because the Kremlin is loath to see anti-Russian sentiment grow in Armenia. “Both the logic of the game unfolding in the region and the correlation of forces in the domestic political field objectively mean that Baghramian Avenue is very likely to again become a battle ground in the coming weeks,” the paper concludes.

According to “Haykakan Zhamanak,” Kocharian made it plain on Thursday that “for him the place of the [Soviet Union’s ruling] Politburo hasn’t changed and continues to be located in Moscow.”

“Ayb-Fe” takes a close look at the bitter row between opposition leaders Artashes Geghamian and Aram Karapetian. “They both have a reputation of pro-Russian politicians,” the paper says. “They can get support from Moscow and will stake their bets on approximately the same electorate.” They therefore have reason to dislike each other. By the same token, one might soon see similar fights between Justice Minister David Harutiunian, former Prime Minister Armen Darpinian and former Foreign Minister Raffi Hovannisian. “All of this means that campaigning for the next elections -- it’s still not clear whether they will be pre-term or regular -- has kicked off.”

“The state and the society need an opposition,” writes “Yerkir.” “There are not many showdown options. Either the current opposition will perform its function, or it will be replaced by another political force that will play a role befitting the political field.” The main mission of the Armenian opposition, according to the weekly newspaper of the Dashnaktsutyun party, is to come up with concrete proposals on how to meet the country’s challenges and try to push them through parliament.

“Yerkir” also carries an extensive interview with Aram Karapetian in which he praises Dashnaktsutyun and “a part of the Republican Party.” Karapetian says he is “absolutely confident” that he will cooperate with the two political groups on some very important issues.

(Vache Sarkisian)
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