(Saturday, June 16)
“Hraparak” is extremely pessimistic about President Serzh Sarkisian’s new government, saying that the lack of new faces there bodes ill for sweeping changes promised by the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) in the parliamentary election campaign. “Looking at this composition [of ministers,] one can conclude that Serzh Sarkisian has no desire and intention to change, at least for now,” writes the paper. “The most frequent and obvious element of his work is maintenance of the status quo. He is the kind of a person who goes slowly and far and is afraid of changing something in his life because he sees danger in every change.”
“Yerkir” says the upcoming parliament debates on the new government’s program will be a waste of time given the HHK’s complete disregard for the opinions of other major political groups. The paper says if it would be more honest if the program was discussed and approved only by the HHK’s governing bodies.
Mkrtich Minasian, parliament deputy from the HHK, assures “Hayots Ashkhar” that the government will not struggle to push bills through the new National Assembly because of HHK lawmakers’ notorious absenteeism. “I don’t think that other factions -- Prosperous Armenia, Zharangutyun, Dashnaktsutyun -- will always be voting against all those laws that will be submitted to the parliament,” he says. “There can be no such thing. After all, there is common sense, a field for healthy and constructive discussions. But if there are disagreements on some bills, we will try to urge all of our [HHK] deputies work more in a more prepared, mobilized and productive way.”
“Zhamanak” says that political factors will continue to have a strong influence on the controversial criminal proceedings launched against former Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian. But the paper describes as “naïve” suggestions that Oskanian is being punished by the authorities for preventing Gagik Tsarukian’s Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK) from joining the new government. It says that even former President Robert Kocharian did not necessarily have a decisive influence on Tsarukian’s decision.
“Clashes on the Armenian-Azerbaijani border are not connected with the possibility of a [renewed] war,” political analyst Aleksandr Iskandarian tells “168 Zham.” “Sabotage attacks are just a form of political blackmail, a means of influencing external forces. Azerbaijani rhetoric is becoming increasingly tough and it stopped working at one point, and so [Azerbaijani] attacks became the next phase of this rhetoric.”