An editorial in “Yerkir” comments on the 20th anniversary of a key Armenian military victory in the 1991-1994 war in Nagorno-Karabakh. “The re-conquest of Shushi was our last huge achievement in the 20-year history of independent Armenia,” writes the paper. “After that we stepped on the path of decline and regress,” it says. “We did not try to reinforce the real victory, created by our blood, with our growth as a state, as a society.”
“Zhoghovurd” says that of all major election contenders the opposition Armenian National Congress (HAK) presented on Tuesday the clearest plan of post-elections actions. The paper says that the HAK’s decision to appeal to the Constitutional Court against the official election results is largely a formality because the opposition will not renounce its seven seats in the new parliament.
“The most important question now is whether or not Serzh Sarkisian will demand that Gagik Tsarukian support him in the  presidential election,” writes “Zhamanak.” The paper also claims that Tsarukian’s Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK) stole many votes from the HAK and other opposition forces by acting like an opposition party during the election campaign. “At the same time the BHK has managed the HAK’s actions, thereby making them also effectively manageable for the entire regime,” it says. “Will Serzh Sarkisian attempt to use that methodology and mechanism for a second time? Or … maybe he will prefer another mechanism and methodology in the presidential election.”
Khosrov Harutiunian, a veteran politician elected to the parliament on the ruling HHK’s ticket, tells “Hayots Ashkhar” that those Western observers who monitored their first Armenian election could not notice “progress” made by the authorities. He claims that other observers who have worked in Armenia in the past “noticed quite clear-cut reforms.” “The observers reported the considerable progress made [by Armenia in election conduct] in their preliminary conclusions,” he says.
But as Artur Sakunts, an Armenian human rights campaigner who led a local vote-monitoring team, tells “Haykakan Zhamanak,” the Western observers’ findings were “inadequate.” Sakunts attributes that to the fact that the OSCE, the Council of Europe and the European Parliament are “political bodies that are under political control.” “That happens when human rights are subordinated to political interests,” he claims. “True, there was no violence [on election day.] But there was no need for violence because employees of the oligarchs running for the parliament had already been subjected to violence and treated like slaves.”