(Saturday, October 9)
In an extensive interview with “168 Zham,” Defense Minister Seyran Ohanian comments on the Dashnaktsutyun party’s calls for the formation of a “military-political alliance” between Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh. “From the purely military standpoint, there is no need for such an alliance because there already exist full-fledged mechanisms for interaction between the defense systems of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic and the Republic of Armenia,” argues Ohanian. “Therefore, the signing of an alliance could have only a political-legal significance.” He says that is one of “numerous political tools” which Armenia has at its disposal in peace talks with Azerbaijan.
Davit Babayan, a spokesman for Karabakh President Bako Sahakian, tells “Hayots Ashkhar” that there have been “qualitative changes” in the past five years among several thousand Armenians living in former Azerbaijani districts surrounding Karabakh. “Children and adolescents who didn’t realize much at the time have matured and transformed into personalities,” says Babayan. “That is, those people are now full-fledged citizens of Kashatagh and Karvachar, mature people with their own worldview, who were born and grew up in that land. They don’t consider themselves refugees anymore.”
Speaking to “Kapital,” a parliament deputy from Dashnaktsutyun, Artsvik Minasian, criticizes the authorities in Stepanakert and Yerevan for not resettling more Armenians in those territories. “We thus show the international community that we have no intention to engage in activities in those territories,” he says. “And yet a huge number of refugees, who are still homeless as a result of Azerbaijani atrocities, not only have the legal right to lay claim to those territories but should have also been able to live and work there … This would have strengthened Armenia’s positions and facilitated the process of re-engaging Karabakh in the negotiating process as a full negotiating party.”
“Zhamanak” reports on an “unprecedented” joint statement issued by three opposition parties from Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. The paper also says that Dashnaktsutyun would like to attend a Socialist International meeting to be held in Baku on October 11-12. One of them, Giro Manoyan, is quoted as welcoming the three-party statement.