“Aravot” quotes deputy parliament speaker Samvel Nikoyan as saying that scandalous Armenian videos that appeared on the Internet recently are “the result of infringements of our value system” and are aimed at discrediting Armenia’s schools, military and Diaspora. Commenting on this remark, the paper lays the blame on individuals shown in those clips, rather than those who posted them on Youtube. “The authorities want to do what they want to, but in a way that would prevent anyone from covering and discussing that,” it says. “And when that is covered and discussed, they immediately detect an international conspiracy.”
“Hraparak” carries an interview with Hovannes Sahakian, a parliament deputy from the presidential Republican Party of Armenia (HHK). The paper asks him to comment on the Prosperous Armenia Party’s ambition to win a parliamentary majority and even nominate its own presidential candidate in 2013. Is the HHK ready hand over power to the BHK? “We are not discussing that issue because it is not timely and because such an issue can not be raised in the next 15-20 years,” replies Sahakian. “The BHK may also set itself the task of occupying the Kuril islands, but we can’t tell the BHK, ‘Why have you set that task?’”
“Hetq” reports on an inquiry into the alleged embezzlement of public funds by the Ministry of Environment Protection and Armenia’s national meteorological service. The funds had been allocated for the purchase of a hydrological research ship to be deployed in Lake Sevan. “Officials misappropriated more than 100 million drams ($280,000) and have still not been punished and will not be punished,” writes the investigative weekly. “In Armenia, a villager stealing a sack of flour can very quickly end up in prison, while officials stealing millions from the state won’t get in trouble. These are the rules of the game accepted in Armenia, the real laws of the republic.”
Citing the findings of a UN-financed survey, “Hayots Ashkhar” says 46 percent of Armenians do not see a bright future for themselves in Armenia. The paper says the survey also found that one in ten young families in the country lack adequate housing.
“Kapital” reports that the Ministry of Diaspora Affairs will soon launch a program designed to encourage Diaspora Armenians to serve in Armenia’s armed forces. “From the legal standpoint, this program is not feasible today,” comments the paper. “The [Diaspora] young people, although Armenian, are citizens of other countries. Under Armenian law, only Armenia’s citizens are subject to compulsory military service.”