(Saturday, August 4)
Aghvan Vartanian, a parliamentary leader of the opposition Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutyun), tells “Zhamanak” that opposition forces in Armenia must agree on a common platform before trying to nominate a single presidential candidate in next year’s election. Armenians, he says, must see that for the opposition coming to power is not an end in itself. Vartanian also bemoans what he calls the heavy use of administrative resources by the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) in the May 6 parliamentary elections. He claims that the HHK is continuing to force civil servants and other state officials to work in the party’s interests.
“Hraparak” notes disapprovingly that unlike the president of the republic, the heads of local government bodies in Armenia can run for reelection as many times as they want. “It’s hard to tell which way is correct or wrong,” Davit Harutiunian, chairman of the Armenian parliament’s committee on legal affairs, is quoted as saying in this regard. “I personally am inclined to support limits [on mayors’ terms in office.] I think that two terms is enough time for a [winning local election] candidate.”
In an interview with “Aravot,” Economy Minister Tigran Davtian speaks of encouraging developments in Armenia’s manufacturing sector. “In the course of this year, we are going to open a large metallurgical plant in Charenstavan,” he says. “We haven’t had [plants] of that scale.” The enterprise will employ 300 people, he adds. Davtian also says that about 60 other manufacturing businesses have been set up or modernized in Armenia of late, resulting in about 5,000 new jobs. “You may say that’s not a big deal, but we are talking about good jobs … People’s dream, which has been left over from Soviet times, about having stable and long-term jobs will come true,” he says.