In an editorial devoted to the 20th anniversary of the adoption of Armenia’s Declaration of Independence, “Aravot” pays tribute to the first non-Communist government in Yerevan for leading the country to independence “with the most optimal timetable.” The paper says it was right not to declare Armenia’s immediate secession from the Soviet Union in 1990. It goes on to claim that the anniversary means little to the current Armenian leadership. “Some statements, whose meaning nobody examines in earnest, are being made [by the government] for the sake of propriety. The rulers’ minds are focused on other, much more material themes,” it says.
“Hraparak” says the anniversary was mainly marked on Monday by politicians and government officials. “In particular, the commemorations took the form of meaningless roundtables and meaningless speeches,” writes the paper.
“There are two main reasons for the increase in Russia’s attention to Armenia and the deepening of Russian-Armenian military-political cooperation,” writes “Hayots Ashkhar.” “The first is Russia’s intention to achieve a certain division of roles in the continuing cooperation and rivalry with the United States on the global level in order to get a full freedom of actions in the South Caucasus in return for not hindering its rival in Afghanistan and, partly, Iran. The second one is a shared Russian-Armenian interest in restraining the Turkish-Azerbaijani tandem’s appetite for war and bolstering Armenia’s defense capacity at the regional level.”
“Azg” says Russian President Dmitry Medvedev’s state visit to Armenia was a success. “Medvedev’s visit took place in a generally symbolic atmosphere of fraternal strategic cooperation, mutual assistance and references to the joint [Russian-Armenian] past,” comments the paper.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” reports that a 4 percent rate of economic growth recorded by the National Statistical Service in the first seven months of this year fell well short of the Armenian government’s growth projections for 2010. “The indicators are really worrisome,” the paper says, noting that economic activity in Armenia weakened from June through July. “There was no such thing in previous months,” it adds. The pro-opposition daily claims that a slump in agricultural production was not solely responsible for the slowdown.