“Iravunk” sees “far-reaching political goals” behind the Republican Party’s refusal to endorse one of its senior members who plans to contest an October local election in Yerevan’s Ajapnyak district. The paper says Defense Minister Serzh Sarkisian, who is officially the number two figure in the HHK, has thereby shown “who is the boss in the HHK” and made it clear that he joined the party to use it as a launch pad for his presidency and does not care about the political ambitions of its individual members. “The move, which upset Galust Sahakian so much, stemmed from that. And not only from that,” it concludes.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” quotes parliament deputy Victor Dallakian as making a similar point. “Serzh Sarkisian, who bought that party in a package deal on July 22, has the right to do whatever he wants to his property,” says the former member of the opposition Artarutyun alliance. “Any development occurring after that is just a consequence.”
“It is obvious that what happened [in the HHK] is an ordinary practice of ignoring voters in our country who are not allowed to pick one of the individuals willing to get elected,” writes “Azg.” The paper predicts that the outcome of elections in other local communities and even at the national level will be decided in a similar fashion. “Who the hell a voter is to be reckoned with? He is dependent on scraping a living on a daily basis, the fear of losing his job, the mercy of mighty men, vote bribes, various handouts.”
“Aravot” is convinced that parliament deputy Tatul Manaserian has left the Artarutyun bloc in order to join Gagik Tsarukian’s Prosperous Armenia party. The paper dismisses Manaserian’s earlier assurances that he will never become a lackey of President Robert Kocharian. “There is no doubt anymore that Mr. Manaserian will end up in the ranks of Gagik Tsarukian’s party,” it says.
In a separate report, “Aravot” says that Vyacheslav Ivankov, a prominent Russian crime figure who served a jail sentence in the United States, will arrive in Armenia this week. The paper claims that Armenian law-enforcement officials have received “appropriate instructions regarding his reception” but does not elaborate.