“Hayots Ashkhar” speculates that the continuing hunger strike by presidential candidate Andreas Ghukasian may be part of a conspiracy to make Armenians believe that “a suicide or an uprising is the only way of fighting against the regime.” “At the same time public evaluations by Western ambassadors may also have a special role and significance in terms of encouraging actors and giving them psychological assistance,” says the pro-government daily. “And the assassination attempt against a well-known politician and presidential candidate [Paruyr Hayrikian] only complements the overall picture.”
“Hraparak” comments on recent criticism of the Armenian authorities voiced by some Yerevan-based Western ambassadors. “With our behavior and practices we have led the civilized world to give up diplomatic language and bluntly tell truths,” writes the paper. “No matter how much the foreign minister and his deputy, the prime minister and deputies resent [that criticism,] we ourselves have created that situation. And we should not accuse the [Polish] ambassador of overstepping their powers. If you can’t get your house in order your neighbors will have to step in and help.”
“Zhoghovurd” says the events of the past week demonstrated that “one does not need to have resources for changing the political situation in Armenia.” “After the attempt on Paruyr Hayrikian’s life it became obvious that even one person can generate a spark in the society,” says the paper. “Extinguishing it may require much more energy from Serzh Sarkisian than he needed when neutralizing Gagik Tsarukian and Levon Ter-Petrosian.”
“168 Zham” criticizes Prime Minister Tigran Sarkisian for defending on Wednesday a sharp rise in taxes levied from self-employed individuals such as dentists and real estate agents. “Taking an unpopular step such as an increase in taxes in advance of elections shows just how confident and secure the current authorities feel,” says the paper.
“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” accuses the Armenian government and its business cronies of preventing large foreign companies from setting up shop in Armenia. The pro-opposition daily claims that they are not interested in greater competition in the country because their businesses make disproportionate profits now.