(Saturday, May 19)
“Right now no political force remembers the society,” “Zhamanak” writes in an editorial. “Except, of course, for reminding of vote bribes, which they have made their alibi. In essence, this situation characterizes and sums up the bankruptcy of Armenia’s current political and party system and its inadequacy for the society’s demands and challenges facing the state. For Armenia’s political and party system, the citizen is merely a listener, rather than a decision maker.”
“168 Zham” says “nothing will change” in Armenia regardless of whether or not President Serzh Sarkisian forms a new coalition government in the wake of the parliamentary elections. The paper believes that such a coalition would be beneficial for both Sarkisian’s Republican Party (HHK) and Gagik Tsarukian’s Prosperous Armenia (BHK). It says that at their meeting last week Sarkisian and Tsarukian discussed not only the distribution of ministerial portfolios but also foreign policy issues.
“Yerkir” comments on Russian President Vladimir Putin’s failure to hold a separate meeting with Serzh Sarkisian on the sidelines of an informal Commonwealth of Independent States summit in Moscow last week. “Naturally, different kinds of commentaries have been voiced and far-reaching presumptions have been made. There have even been opinions that Putin is punishing Serzh Sarkisian for the latter’s new, Western orientation. The Armenian public, which has long been accustomed to warm relations with Moscow, immediately noticed the Moscow tepidness and started closely monitoring further developments.”
“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” reports on deepening rifts within the Armenian National Congress (HAK) and, in particular, the Hanrapetutyun (Republic) party’s decision to leave the opposition alliance. “The dominant view in the Congress is that that is a cleaning process, rather than disintegration,” writes the pro-opposition daily. “But maybe the HAK ship is really sinking,” it adds. “Let’s put aside these presumptions because it’s not a nice thing as everyone knows who is the first to leave a sinking ship. One can only assume that it’s a pretty firm ship which is simply headed in the wrong direction. And in that case, any passenger has the right to jump ship and swim on their own in the right direction. Of course, they will hardly reach the shore.”
HHK spokesman Eduard Sharmazanov tells “Zhoghovurd” that as many as 69 individuals will leave the ruling party’s electoral list to avoid taking up seats in the new National Assembly. “There are 131 seats in the parliament,” he says. “Just because we presented a 253-member seat doesn’t mean that we aspired to having all 131 seats. Naturally it was obvious that not everyone on the list will be in the parliament and it’s logical that after our victory most resignation letters [by HHK candidates] will be written by regional governors, deputy governors and the like.”