(Saturday, December 17)
“Zhamanak” claims that as Armenia’s next parliamentary elections approach President Serzh Sarkisian will increasingly need to end “squabbles” within his Republican Party (HHK). “That means he should probably draw up the text of another declaration,” writes the paper. It also claims that throughout his presidency Sarkisian has done little apart from “chasing his legitimacy” in and outside Armenia. “The question of legitimacy has become the only driving force of Serzh Sarkisian’s presidency. All of his problems, including intra-governmental ones, stem from the absence of it,” concludes the paper.
“All negative characteristics of authoritarian and even totalitarian systems are becoming increasingly evident in Armenia,” “Yerkir” writes in an editorial. The paper says that despite his “relatively soft rhetoric” Sarkisian has sought to concentrate power in his and the HHK’s hands. “And yet in case of drawing lessons from history, it becomes obvious that such a concentration of power is extremely dangerous not only for that person but also the state,” it says. “Sooner or later the people get tired of the same faces, even in cases where life gradually improves.”
Colonel Karen Mehrabian, deputy chief of an Armenian police unit charged with maintaining public order, tells “Aravot” that the national police chief, Vladimir Gasparian, has every right to make cadre changes in order to put his programs into practice. “He is probably choosing his cadres, his team. Isn’t that logical?” says Mehrabian.
“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” reports that President Sarkisian attended on Friday a meeting of HHK chapters in central Yerevan and was elected to represent them at the upcoming HHK convention. The paper says former Yerevan Mayor Gagik Beglarian and another HHK activist were also elected congress delegates. It notes that Beglarian boycotted sessions of the HHK’s governing board following his December 2010 sacking. “Beglarian started participating in HHK meetings only recently. Namely at the end of October when Yerevan Mayor Karen Karapetian tendered his resignation,” it says.