“Hraparak” notes with satisfaction that the violent death of military doctor Vahe Avetian is making the Armenian society “intolerant of all bad things.” “The resource of public tolerance has been sort of exhausted,” writes the paper. “The wave of protest may die down and people may go back to their homes this time as well, continuing to tolerate these authorities and the existing situation. But one more such incident could put an end to everything. Crowds of people could flood the streets and wipe out everything standing in their way.”
“Zhamanak” says a “purely judicial” punishment of those responsible for Avetian’s death would not satisfy the society because “people are demanding systemic and comprehensive changes” that would end impunity enjoyed by “the criminal oligarchic system.”
“Aravot” says opposition political forces will try to make the most of the outcry in order to attack the government. “But when government representatives urge people not to politicize that outrageous crime, that is also hypocrisy,” editorializes the paper. It says Avetian’s death is politicized because it is “a result of a system created since the mid-1990s.” “The authorities have bred a privileged class, oligarchs in the first instance, that doesn’t give a damn about the law. [The oligarchs,] for their part, have bred zombies called bodyguards.” The paper recalls in this regard that a bodyguard of former President Robert Kocharian had gotten off with a suspended and short prison sentence for beating to death a man at a Yerevan café. It says the men accused of beating Avetian to death may also avoid prison.
“There are four power structures in Armenia at present: the army, the police, the National Security Service and oligarchs’ security teams that are in effect illegal armed formations,” writes “Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun.” “The latter power structure is quite powerful and does not consist of only bodyguards of one or another oligarch. In Armenia, there are more than a dozen oligarchs that have many restaurants, markets, factories, shops and so on. All of them have security services. So we are talking about a 4,000-5,000-strong, well-armed, well-equipped and effectively uncontrolled structure.” The pro-opposition paper claims that President Serzh Sarkisian will not crack down on those armed bands because he will badly need their support in next year’s presidential election.
“Yerkir” says the oligarchs must bear full responsibility for their bodyguards’ actions until there is a special law regulating them. The paper says that in the absence of such a law they can do whatever their bosses want.