Arman Musinian, a spokesman for the Armenian National Congress (HAK), assures “Zhamanak” that the opposition’s moratorium on demonstrations announced in October did not amount to a cessation of its political activities. “The opposition suspended that form of political struggle for several months and the president [Levon Ter-Petrosian] clearly explained why,” says Musician. He says the HAK will unveil its new tactic at its March 1 rally in Yerevan.
“I don’t think you can find a single person in Armenia who can say what is expected on March 1,” another opposition politician, Vahan Shirkhanian, tells “Iravunk de facto.” “Even Serzh Sarkisian, who knows what he planned, will have trouble what the result of that will be.” Shirkhanian says it is still too early to speculate whether the March 1 will mark the start of the kind of protests that took place in Yerevan in the wake of the February 2008 election. “If the authorities intend to escalate the situation … then that will be yet another serious and inadmissible blunder of the authorities because it would call into question the existence of Artsakh (Karabakh,)” he says.
“Azg” hopes that the opposition and the authorities will not exploit the first anniversary of the March 2008 clashes in Yerevan for political aims. In an editorial, the paper says both camps should admit their mistakes. It says the Ter-Petrosian-led opposition should apologize for “overestimating” its strength and telling supporters to clash with police while the authorities should “forgive” the opposition. Failure to do that would leave the Armenian people “equally and finally disappointed with both camps,” concludes “Azg.”
“Hraparak” reports that the Yerkrapah Union of Karabakh war veterans has indefinitely postponed its annual conference that was due to take place in December. The paper thinks that the Yerkrapah chairman, Manvel Grigorian, is dragging out preparations for the conference for political reasons and, in particular, the continuing imprisonment of about two dozen members of the organization. It says Grigorian does not want a public discussion of their fate by Yerkrapah delegates at this point.