(Saturday, June 18)
“Haykakan Zhamanak” says that opposition leaders rather than ordinary people are to blame for what it sees as a failure of “democratic revolution” in Armenia. The paper goes on to urge opposition leader Aram Sarkisian to pull out of the Artarutyun alliance and surrender his parliament seat. “Such a move by Sarkisian would convince opposition-minded strata that there is somebody in the political arena who is able to take over the game and lead the people,” it writes, adding that failure to do so would mean that “he is not anyone’s foe anymore.”
“Haykakan Zhamanak” also asks another opposition leader, Artashes Geghamian, to comment on speculation about possible cooperation between Sarkisian and parliament speaker Artur Baghdasarian. Geghamian says he does not think that an alliance between the two men would have a future.
“Robert Kocharian is well aware that there is no way he can run [for president] for a third time,” opposition lawmaker Shavarsh Kocharian tells “Aravot.” “His main objective now is the following: To do everything to appoint a successor who would give him security guarantees. If the country’s constitution is amended and becomes democratic nobody could and would give him such guarantees. In order to give such guarantees one needs to have the powers which the current president has today. We have all become hostages of that approach.”
Vartan Poghosian, a lawyer leading the Democracy non-governmental organization, tells “Golos Armenii” that the Armenian authorities have embarked on constitutional reform only at the behest of the Council of Europe. “I am convinced that if everything stemmed from internal processes nothing important would happen,” he says. “In this case the fairly tough and principled position of the Venice Commission plays a positive role.”
“Hayots Ashkhar” welcomes last week’s resolution by the German parliament as the beginning of Germany’s “full recognition of the Armenian Genocide.” The paper says the move also highlighted Turkey’s failure to scuttle worldwide affirmation of the genocide and isolate Armenia.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” reports that Manuk Gasparian, an independent parliament deputy, plans to set up his own political party. Gasparian is quoted as saying that he has figured it will be easier for him and a few of his loyalists to get into the next National Assembly through a party list than to get reelected from an individual constituency. He says he has already offered a several prominent individuals to join the new party, describing them as “hewed stones.”
“Aravot” carries a scathing report about the appointment of Oleg Yesayan, the speaker of Nagorno-Karabakh’s outgoing parliament, as chairman of Armenia’s state Commission on Securities. “According to experts, it is not yet clear whether Mr. Yesayan knows the meaning of the word stocks,” it says.