“Zhamanak” comments on this week’s Armenian Constitutional Court ruling upholding the legality of the August 2010 agreement that extended Russian’s lease on its military base in Armenia. The paper complains that the Armenian government has still not clearly explained why it had to extend the Russian troop presence now, about ten years before the expiry of the previous Russian-Armenian defense pact. “Nor is it clear just how the Russians will be contributing to Armenia’s security,” it says. “In other words, that Russian-Armenian treaty has raised more questions than given answers,” concludes the paper.
“Hayots Ashkhar” is concerned about Turkey’s efforts to have a Turkish official appointed as secretary general of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. Hrayr Karapetian, the chairman of the Armenian parliament committee on defense and security, is quoted as saying that this is a response to serious challenges facing Turkey. “It is possible that the wave of revolutions that began in the Islamic world will continue in Turkey,” claims Karapetian. He notes that Ankara already managed to install a Turkish president of the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) a year ago. “Our diplomacy should have countered all this more actively, and yet almost nothing was done,” adds the senior member of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutyun).
“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” comments sarcastically on a poorly attended rally that was held in Yerevan on Tuesday by Tigran Karapetian, the owner of the recently closed ALM TV station. The paper claims that Karapetian attracted only several hundred people to the rally because the authorities did not help him this time around. This is so unfair of them, it says tartly. “Even now he is behaving himself. He is saying, for example, that the country was plundered under Levon Ter-Petrosian … So he did have reason to expect that his efforts will be appreciated. But they weren’t,” writes the paper sympathetic to Ter-Petrosian.
“Yerkir” says that the Armenian authorities seem to be encouraging further emigration from the country. “The prime minister, for example, regards the departing citizens not as those leaving the country but the ones sending money home from abroad,” claims the Dashnaktsutyun-controlled daily. “As a result, Armenia is turning into a supplier of human resources. Russia has organized an outflow of workforce from Armenia lately. Armenian citizens are transported to the Altay region [in Siberia.] And in Georgia, any Armenian can get citizenship in a matter of days. This is not just a matter of dignity. This is becoming a matter of survival of the state and statehood.”