“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” says that by embarking on a dialogue with the government the Armenian National Congress (HAK) demonstrated that it believes in “the possibility of regime change through negotiations.” The opposition paper says that the collapse of that dialogue has left the HAK with only one option: to continue its struggle in the streets. “Before trying surgery, any doctor must try to cure a patient with medication,” it explains figuratively.
“We are now waiting to see what steps the authorities will take,” Vahagn Khachatrian, a member of the HAK’s negotiating team, tells “Haykakan Zhamanak.” He reiterates the HAK’s position that the dialogue will resume only if opposition activist Tigran Arakelian is released from pre-trial detention.
Sociologist Hranush Kharatian tells “Aravot” that the HAK is not serious about its demands for early national elections and will instead reach confidential agreements with the authorities ahead of the next, regular elections. “And there will be constructive negotiations for the sake of the country,” she says, adding that the general public will play no part in that process.
“Yerkir” quotes political commentator Gegham Nazarian as saying that the situation in Armenia could be destabilized not by the HAK’s street protests but other, “much more important factors.” “Social tension is rising and living standards are continuing to plummet,” he claims. “The incomprehensible economic policy pursued by [Prime Minister] Tigran Sarkisian has lead to a situation where virtually any political force or public figure, including the HAK, can get the people out on the streets at any moment.” Nazarian also says that the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) should either reaffirm its full support for Sarkisian’s cabinet or distance itself from it.
Gohar Yenokian, a parliament deputy from the pro-government Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK), assures “Hraparak” that neither she nor dozens of other lawmakers do business in violation of the Armenian constitution. Yenokian says at the same time that they are working hard to create and maintain “thousands of jobs.”