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Press Review


“168 Zham” is unimpressed by the Armenian parliament’s statement on the Azerbaijani officer Ramil Safarov’s release from prison, which it adopted at an extraordinary session on Wednesday. The paper says the statement does not recommend any concrete steps that should be taken by the Armenian government next. “The National Assembly yesterday once again demonstrated that everything in Armenia is decided by the president,” it says.

“Zhamanak” also criticizes the “toothless” statement, saying that it has “no political significance.” The paper claims that no foreign government or international organization will take it seriously. In a separate commentary, it also attacks the Armenian diplomatic service, saying that nepotism and incompetence is the norm there. “Those posts cater for incumbent authorities and high-ranking officials, rather than the state,” it claims.

“Hayots Ashkhar” notes the “competitive environment” during Wednesday’s parliament debate that lasted for eight hours. The paper says deputies “talked too much.”

“Aravot” says that the Hungarian government’s decision to send Safarov back to Azerbaijan may have been “mean and unforgivable” but protesters in Yerevan should not have burned Hungarian flags. The paper says such actions usually characterize “weak individuals and groups who are unable to prove their point by other means.”

“Hraparak” is delighted with demonstrations in Hungary attended by thousands of people condemning their government over the Safarov affair. “The same cannot be said about the Azerbaijani public,” writes the paper. “Nobody in our neighboring state seems to have condemned [Ilham] Aliyev’s behavior … and this is more appalling than a single order issued by a dictator. This shows that this [Azerbaijani] society is hopelessly sick.” Compared to Azerbaijan, it says, the Armenian society “looks healthy and progressive.”

Sociologist Lyudmila Harutiunian tells “168 Zham” that Gagik Tsarukian’s Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK) has to “maneuver” now in order to preserve its sizable electorate. Harutiunian is at the same time at a loss to explain the BHK’s unwillingness to explicitly declare itself an opposition force.

(Naira Bulghadarian)
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