“Zhamanak” sees no major differences between the Republican (HHK) and Prosperous Armenia (BHK) parties related to democracy, the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict or foreign policy. The paper says the country’s major opposition forces, notably the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutyun) and the Armenian National Congress (HAK), are well aware of this but, nonetheless, ready to work together with the BHK.
“Hraparak” says disapprovingly that all eyes are now on BHK leader Gagik Tsarukian, who has still not announced whether his party will have its own presidential candidate or support the incumbent President Serzh Sarkisian. Many are also waiting to see if HAK leader Levon Ter-Petrosian will enter the fray. “Only a powerless and desperate person, who has lost hope and is waiting to see what others will do, can have such deliberations,” comments the paper. “Things change only after a struggle.”
“Zhoghovurd” comments on the BHK’s plans to include Vartan Oskanian, the embattled former foreign ministers, on the Armenian delegation at the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly (PACE). The paper says Tsarukian’s party is worried that Prosecutor-General Aghvan Hovsepian may soon ask the parliament to allow Oskanian’s arrest on controversial criminal charges. It notes at the same time that Galust Sahakian, a deputy chairman of the ruling HHK, said on Monday that Hovsepian will not approach the National Assembly with such a demand any time soon. The paper wonders who told Sahakian about that.
“Aravot” says that Mikhail Leontyev, a pro-Kremlin Russian media commentator, has written an “offensive” column warning that Armenia will face grave consequences if it refuses to join a “Eurasian Union” of former Soviet republics promoted by President Vladimir Putin. The paper’s editor, Aram Abrahamian, points out that Russia and Belarus already created such a union more than a decade ago and nothing came of it. “Both Russia, the European Union and the United States are equally hypocritical, but for me Europe is not about joining some military-political or economic entity but a particular culture of working, interacting with people and the society and thinking, which we have yet to learn,” he writes.
“Orakarg” comments on a senior EU diplomat’s remark that Armenia’s future relations with the EU depend on the proper conduct of the February 2013 presidential election. The paper claims that the EU delayed the holding of an international donor conference on Armenia this year because it was unhappy with the Armenian authorities’ handling of the last parliamentary elections. “Armenia is paying a very high price for not respecting democracy,” it says.