“Aravot” carries U.S. mediator Matthew Bryza’s interview with the Mediamax new agency in which he says that ordinary Armenians and Azerbaijanis should also “play a role in the search of ways of ensuring their peaceful co-existence.” That, according to him, also applies to “representatives of the people of Nagorno-Karabakh.” Bryza is also quoted as saying that the parties are “moving closer the signing of a comprehensive peace accord.”
According to “Hayots Ashkhar,” the next two years will be “fateful” for the resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. The paper sees a real possibility of “international recognition of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic” and a “further strengthening of Armenia’s international positions.”
But as “Azg” points out, the fact is that the Karabakh dispute remains unresolved despite a flurry of diplomatic activity in 2006 and talk of an impending Armenian withdrawal from occupied Azerbaijani lands. “At least until December 31, nobody will give anything to anyone,” says the paper.
“Chorrord Ishkhanutyun” says the Armenian public is now in a “state of hypnosis.” Armenians, says the paper, are waiting to see “who will manage to hand out more vote bribes: the HHK or Prosperous Armenia” and disagree on who gives more money to the opposition: Serzh Sarkisian or Robert Kocharian. “And so public opinion is divided” between those who think Prosperous Armenia is no match to Prosperous Armenia and those who predict a victory for Gagik Tsarukian. There are also differing opinions on the opposition’s sources of funding. “Some insist that it is the Russians that give money to the opposition, while the others point the finger at the Americans,” says the paper.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” says that the five judges of Armenia’s Court of Cassation who acquitted three soldiers controversially sentenced to life imprisonment now risk dismissal. The paper claims that Armenia’s leadership and security apparatus took their unprecedented ruling as a brazen gesture of defiance. It says the head of the court’s Chamber on Criminal Cases, Mher Khachatrian, is likely to bear the brunt of the government’s ire.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” reports that pro-Russian opposition leader Aram Karapetian has been presented with a Swish-made watch by Russian President Vladimir Putin. The paper says a Kremlin official passed the gift to a “representative” of Karapetian in Moscow this week. The oppositionist is quoted as saying that he does not know why he was rewarded by the Russian leader.