“Yerkir” reports on the preliminary results of the latest national census which show that Armenia’s population has shrunk by 130,000 in the last ten years, to about 2.9 million. The paper believes that the current Armenian authorities are primarily responsible for this shrinkage, saying that most of it has occurred since 2009. It says people have been leaving the country because of the government’s failed socioeconomic policies, injustice and “the atmosphere of impunity.” “Sadly, nobody will be held responsible for that,” concludes the pro-opposition paper.
“Zhamanak” also looks at the “sad demographic picture.” “It’s not just about the size of the population,” writes the paper. “It testifies to a total retreat in the country because … it means the country’s living standards have also fallen in the last ten years.”
“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” says both President Serzh Sarkisian and former President Robert Kocharian are to blame for this alarming trend. “We have grown and reformed ourselves at such a high pace that people have found that too much and left Armenia,” the paper notes tartly.
“Hraparak” says the last session of Armenia’s National Assembly is proving to be “the most interesting and turbulent in the history of this parliament.” The paper points, among other things, to Tuesday’s one-day boycott of parliament sessions that was announced by the Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK). “There is a lot more to come,” it says in an editorial. “There is only one sad thing in all this. The pre-election fuss and demarches have no political basis whatsoever. At the heart of everything is either emotions … or blackmail and political horse-trading which smacks of only money, deceit and immaturity.”
In an interview with “Hayots Ashkhar,” Galust Sahakian, a deputy chairman of the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK), insists that there are no “cracks” in the governing coalition despite the HHK’s latest row with the BHK. “I don’t even think that this BHK manifestation is against the Republicans,” he says.