“Hraparak” blames Defense Minister Seyran Ohanian for the latest deadly shootings in the Armenian army, saying that he should have dealt with army problems instead of making trips abroad, “receiving some delegations” and “handing out medals.” The paper says a short statement issued by Ohanian’s ministry Wednesday’s “slaughter” at an army unit was extremely vague and resembled “disinformation.” “Of course, no army in the world is immune to tragic incidents,” it says. “But when they have a quantitative growth that makes qualitative changes obvious, we all get something to think about. And the defense minister, who likes posing before TV cameras, in the first instance.” “Until when will military service be something like a battlefield for our young men?” continues “Hraparak.”
“Haykakan Zhamanak” claims that Russian President Dmitry Medvedev may cancel a visit to Armenia planned for August because of “some problems.” A spokeswoman for Medvedev, Valeria Fedorina, is quoted as telling the paper that she can not give any information about the trip. When asked whether the visit will take place, she replied, “It’s still on the schedule.”
A senior member of the Nagorno-Karabakh parliament, Vahram Atanesian, assures “Hayots Ashkhar” that authorities in Stepanakert did not plan to hold a rally in connection with the top United Nations court’s ruling on Kosovo’s independence. “There was only an idea [to hold such a rally] that was floated by one of the political forces during political discussions, consultations,” says Atanesian. “Afterwards, after weighing up all pros and cons, the political forces decided to refrain from holding the rally.”
“I don’t think that we should concentrate on the opposition’s activities,” Galust Sahakian, a leader of the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) tells “Iravunk.” “Generally speaking, I’ve started forgetting what the opposition is,” he says. Sahakian complains in this context that there has been too much hype over the recent congress of the opposition Armenian Pan-National Movement (HHSh). He is glad that the gathering saw few verbal attacks on the government but disapproves of opposition leader Levon Ter-Petrosian’s statements on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and Turkish-Armenian relations that were made during it.
Ruben Hakobian, the deputy chairman of the opposition Zharangutyun (Heritage) Party, tells “Aravot” that the Armenian opposition camp is far more pluralistic than the HHK-led governing coalition because “the authority is now totalitarian.” Hakobian claims that the HHK’s coalition partners are already under pressure to declare that they will not field candidates in the 2013 presidential election. “The opposition is not like that, and rightly so,” he says, adding that disputes among opposition groups are natural and healthy.