“Haykakan Zhamanak” says Armenia will need “a new type of political force in the new decade.” “It should be not a party but a movement with a broader format that could eventually spawn several new political currents,” writes the paper. “That new force should bring two things to the political arena: new and absolutely fresh ideas … and a new organizational quality based on internal competition and real democracy.”
“Hayots Ashkhar” comments on Tuesday’s meeting in Yerevan of a joint commission of the Armenian and Nagorno-Karabakh parliaments. The paper calls it “the first serious Armenian response to not only steps taken by the Turkish-Azerbaijani tandem but also efforts by the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs to complete the Karabakh negotiating process with a framework agreement.” It says those efforts have emboldened Turkey to link the normalization of its relations with Armenia with Karabakh peace more aggressively.
The fact that the Karabakh parliamentary delegation led by speaker Ashot Ghulian visited Yerevan right after the co-chairs’ latest trip to Baku was “not accidental,” continues “Hayots Ashkhar.” “This means that the ongoing negotiations based on the Madrid principles have entered the final phase where Armenia can not sign anything without the consent of the NKR, a negotiating party under the May 1994 ceasefire agreement,” the paper says.
Former parliament speaker Tigran Torosian tells “168 Zham” that the economic crisis, coupled with lingering internal political tensions, “greatly reduces” Armenia’s ability to meet external challenges. “The coming year will be much more severe for Armenia in all respects, including in the foreign policy area,” says Torosian. “It is obvious that the absence of necessary skills and expertise in the country, superficial approaches and primitive haggling used during the resolution of vital problems are bearing their bitter fruits.”
“I find almost impossible the ratification of the Turkish-Armenian protocols without substantial progress on Nagorno-Karabakh,” “Zhamanak” quotes Matthew Clements, a senior analyst with the London-based Jane’s Information Group, as saying. “Before putting pressure on Turkey one should take into account negative public opinion existing inside Turkey. Ankara can not fail to reckon with it.”
“Chorrord Ishkhanutyun” reports that Armenian law-enforcement authorities claim to have identified 51 cases of corruption this year. “In reality, 51 cases of corruption can be detected not within eleven months in the entire territory of Armenia but within only eleven minutes in any cadastre [service] office,” comments the paper. “Everybody knows that state officials taking bribes forward a part of those bribes to their superiors and thereby avoid further headaches, including the danger of being exposed by law-enforcers,” it says. “Therefore, this official figure shows that the first eleven months of this year saw 51 cases of refusal to give bribes to higher echelons [of power.]”