“Aravot” dismisses the Armenian authorities’ pledge to investigate allegations that opposition detainees were beaten up in custody this week. The paper is certain that security officers did break into their prisons and attacked them on government orders. It says the declared inquiry into the incident will therefore clear them of any wrongdoing.
“Hayots Ashkhar” continues to blame the opposition for turmoil in the trial of seven opposition figures accused of plotting a coup d’etat. The paper says Levon Ter-Petrosian’s Armenian National Congress (HAK) has a “clear plant to turn the trial into a farce.” “They are hoping to drag out the trial … until the Council of Europe adopts a resolution unfavorable to Armenia,” it says.
Lragir.am pounces on President Serzh Sarkisian’s remark that he is “not Santa Klaus to declare a general amnesty” for all arrested oppositionists. “Under Armenia’s constitution, declaring an amnesty is the prerogative of the president of the republic, rather than Santa Klaus,” it comments tartly. The online publication also says that some of the opposition detainees and their friends and relatives are not happy with the idea of a presidential pardon, saying it would imply that they have accepted their guilt.
“Pakagits” reacts with sarcasm to Economy Minister Nerses Yeritsian’s assurances that Armenia has “serious resources” to cope with the global economic downturn. “The global economic crisis is deaf, can’t hearing anything and is stubbornly coming to Armenia,” says the paper. “The Armenian government, for its part, seems to be blind, stubbornly insisting that we can cope with the impact of the crisis.” It says Yeritsian should convey his assurances to employees of industrial enterprises across the country that have lost their jobs as a result of the crisis.
“Chorrord Ishkhanutyun” says political parties represented in Armenia’s coalition government increasingly object to the government’s response to the crisis. The paper says they are right to criticize the government for not cutting taxes and stimulating the economy.