Artak Davtian, a parliament deputy from the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK), tells “Hayots Ashkhar” that Armenia’s upcoming presidential election promises to be less tense than the last vote held in 2008. Davtian says another feature of the 2013 presidential race is that the country’s second most influential party, Prosperous Armenia (BHK), has still not announced whom it wants to become president. He notes that in 2011 the BHK pledged to campaign for President Serzh Sarkisian’s reelection but is now “saying differing things.”
“Zhoghovurd” carries a sarcastic analysis of the BHK’s calls for Armenia’s transformation into a parliamentary republic and the conduct of parliamentary elections only on the party list basis. The paper says that the HHK on Wednesday reacted to those calls very negatively, with deputy parliament speaker Eduard Sharmazanov threatening to “unmask” not only Gagik Tsarukian’s party but also other key political actors.
“Zhamanak” reports that former President Robert Kocharian and his family appear to have not honored their promises to donate to an orphanage 3 million drams ($4,700) in compensatory which the paper was forced to pay when it lost a libel suit filed by them in 2010. The paper says that all of Armenia’s major orphanages told it this week that they have received no financial or other material support from the Kocharian family.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” reports that special police units stopped and impounded trucks on Armenia’s major highways on Wednesday night in what the Armenian authorities called a crackdown on illegal commercial logging. The paper quotes some of the truck drivers as saying that law-enforcement officers did not check their documents to see if they transported wood illegally. “In fact, what happened was yet another police PR action,” it says. “There can be no other characterization of an action during which nobody cared whether or not the wood is transported illegally. They just needed to impound vehicles loaded with wood and bring them to Yerevan.”