“Those who have traditionally had pro-government positions but are known for their nationalist views are in a difficult situation,” writes “Hraparak.” “If they welcome the normalization of relations with Turkey, it will mean a betrayal of their century-old stance. If they don’t welcome, it will mean that they betray Serzh Sarkisian. No less difficult is the plight of those who have traditionally had an opposition stance but have always spoken of development and democracy, good relations and open borders with neighbors. For them, welcoming Serzh Sarkisian’s steps would mean defending the kleptocracy, whereas not welcoming would mean betraying their liberal image. So from any vantage point, the winner in this situation is Serzh Sarkisian.”
“One should not look for conceptual mistakes in Zurich or in the football diplomacy,” writes “Aravot.” Echoing statements by opposition politicians, the paper says that the planned formation of a Turkish-Armenian historical commission is the result of former President Robert Kocharian’s decision in 1998 to include genocide recognition on the Armenian foreign policy agenda. “But not signing the [Turkish-Armenian] protocols or not going to Turkey in this situation would mean fleeing the game, finding ourselves in a shameful situation,” it says. The paper goes on to dismiss former Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian’s critique of Sarkisian’s Turkish policy, saying that he too bears responsibility for it.
“Azg” carries a statement by Oskanian’s Civilitas Foundation which says that Sarkisian’s weekend address to the nation contradicted the very essence of his agreements with the Turks. The foundation insisted that Armenia “abandoned its historical right on the issues of both genocide recognition and homeland dispossession without any reason or need.” “The Armenian administration said one thing but signed another,” said Civilitas.
“Kapital” says that the next phase of the Turkish-Armenian dialogue promises to be “much more difficult and contradictory.” The paper compares Armenia with a football team that has a “very determined” striker and captain but poor defenders and midfielders lacking motivation to win games and a divided fan base. “But can the captain change the team’s line-up? Yes, he can, and that is the only way to avoid defeat,” concludes the paper.