(Saturday, September 18)
“Zhamanak” analyzes and welcomes Armenian National Congress (HAK) leader Levon Ter-Petrosian’s speech at the latest HAK rally in Yerevan, saying that it could give “new impetus to internal political developments.” The paper singles out Ter-Petrosian’s warning to the Armenian authorities not to sign a peace agreement with Azerbaijan not endorsed by Nagorno-Karabakh’s leadership. “In other words, the opposition is withdrawing from its tactic of not restraining Serzh Sarkisian on the Karabakh issue and is somewhat toughening its attitude toward that,” says the pro-HAK daily. It says that for almost two years the opposition alliance gave Sarkisian a free rein in the Karabakh peace process.
“However, the authority has not only rejected that opposition gesture of indirect cooperation but even took it as a sign of the opposition’s weakness. And so Ter-Petrosian seems to consider the [opposition] grace period to have expired,” concludes “Zhamanak.”
“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” claims that attendance at the rally was not poorer than last spring and that the authorities again blocked transport communication between Yerevan and the rest of the country. “In this sense, nothing changed,” says the opposition paper “What changed was the emphases of [HAK leaders’] speeches. Simply put, they became more resolute.” It says Ter-Petrosian toughened his stance on the issue of dialogue with the government.
“Aravot” scoffs at government criticism of a draft UN General Assembly resolution on the Karabakh conflict that was proposed by the HAK. The paper dismisses criticism’ claims that the document is too “weak.”
In an interview with “Hraparak,” a senior lawmaker from the pro-government Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK), Aram Safarian, insists that President Sarkisian’s Republican Party of Armenia is not bent on curtailing the BHK’s presence in government. “The people will decide, elections will decide,” says Safarian. “During the election period we will hold opinion polls, ascertain our real chances and contest the elections with appropriate organizational work.” Safarian also asserts that the next Armenian elections will be “better’ than the previous ones because “our integration into the European family is increasingly deepening.”