“Armenia will risk suffering from the Russian-Georgian conflict the most if it continues to hold on to Russia,” writes “Taregir,” predicting that Russia will again cut, at least temporarily, gas supplies to Georgia and Armenia this winter. The paper says at the same time that Armenia may avoid power shortages this time around thanks to the upcoming exploitation of a gas pipeline from Iran and the nuclear power station at Metsamor.
“Aravot” finds understandable the Armenian authorities’ opposition to the idea of setting aside more National Assembly seats for the electoral system of proportional representation. “Theoretically, it does not matter whether a particular nicknamed businessman becomes a parliament deputy through a party list or individually,” says the paper. “In practice, those are different things.” It explains that individuals elected to the parliament from single-mandate constituencies where they hold sway have more incentives to “work for the government.”
“Haykakan Zhamanak” reports on an “outflow of Armenian capital from Russia” which it says began recently. “Wealthy Armenian businessmen in the Russian Federation take their money to Europe and the United States and buy real property there. The reason for this process is reports which Armenian businessmen are getting from their sources in Russian special services.” In particular, the paper quotes an unnamed “big Armenian entrepreneur who is intensively moving his cash out of Moscow” as saying that he has seen secret directives that order Russian security agencies to harass not only Georgian but Armenian businessmen operating in the country.
Citing information provided by law-enforcement sources, “Hayots Ashkhar” reports that a growing number of Iranian citizens engage in drug trafficking in Armenia. “Analysis of relevant criminal cases opened by the Prosecutor-General’s Office shows that Iranians usually act like suppliers and sellers,” says the paper. “They have already formed their network in Armenia and have people whom they supply with drugs. Employees of companies shipping cargos to and from Iran are often involved in such activity. This is especially true for their drivers.”