“The brazen fresh killings that were committed in broad daylight in Yerevan’s Malatia-Sebastia district yesterday simply came to prove that in our country the real gangsters, bandits and murderers operate with impunity,” writes “Im Iravunk.” The paper says no ordinary citizen of Armenia is now immune to falling victim to such shootings. It says Prosecutor-General Aghvan Hovsepian should pay more attention to fighting against crime and spend less time on public relations stunts such as tree planting.
“The most extraordinary thing is that the shootout occurred just 10-15 meters away from the district prosecutor’s office at Malatia-Sebastia,” says “Chorrord Ishkhanutyun.” “Which once again demonstrates that for the criminal underworld the existence of a law-enforcement system is a mere formality.”
Hovannes Hovannisian, an opposition politician who used to head the Armenian delegation at the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly, tells “Ayb-Fe” that Armenia is becoming a “rogue state.” “Armenia is losing its already weak European credentials at the Council of Europe as well,” he claims.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” reports that a senior member of the Association for Armenia party, widely linked with Hovsepian, told on Tuesday staff at its headquarters in central Yerevan that “the party is switching to an indefinite passive work regime.” Vahram Baghdasarian is said to have told them to stay at home until further notice. The party office is now closed. Interestingly, notes the paper, this is the very office that was leased by the ill-fated Nor Yerkir (New Country) party of Artashes Tumanian, the former chief of President Robert Kocharian’s staff.
“Aravot” reports that Kocharian told the OSCE’s visiting representative on press freedom, Miklos Haraszti, that there are too many television stations in Armenia. “Any good manager has to be concerned with the workload of his subordinates and try to make sure that workload is not disproportionately big,” writes the paper, adding that Kocharian is no exception. His influential chief of staff, Armen Gevorgian, is widely believed to be overseeing the nearly two dozen Armenian TV channels. His job would therefore be much easier if there were fewer broadcasters. He is already quite busy making money from expensive housing construction, says the paper.
“Aravot” goes on to wonder how Gevorgian manages to hold all those TV stations in check. “Are there 17 TV sets in his office? Of course, not. Fortunately, there are numerous vigilant citizens in Armenia and the heads of the TV companies are at the forefront of those citizens and they are undercutting each other.”