“Even in the seeming absence of strong rivals [of President Serzh Sarkisian,] the outcome of the elections is not predetermined,” “Hraparak” writes in an editorial. “This shows that even the most entrenched dictator is afraid of the people and their wrath and realizes that repression, violence, atmosphere of fear, the most vicious mechanisms of electoral fraud, strong administrative levers and millions of dollars in vote bribes are not a guarantee. The only way out is to rely on the conscience of their own people, which is what the HHK candidate [Serzh Sarkisian] is doing.”
“Aravot” discusses lingering questions raised by the January 31 shooting of presidential candidate Paruyr Hayrikian. The paper mocks conspiracy theories of the crime proposed by Hayrikian and other presidential candidates. It also casts doubt on the role of two obscure men arrested by the National Security Service (NSS) in connection with the shooting. “So it is evident that the assassination attempt will be fully solved and the public will have no doubts that the official theory is utterly true,” it concludes sarcastically.
“The authorities are boasting that there is no atmosphere of fear in Armenia ahead of these elections and that a normal and civilized campaign is underway,” writes “Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun.” The paper strongly disagrees with these assertions, it arguing that not a single government official or public sector employee has publicly stated their intention to vote for anyone other than Serzh Sarkisian.
“Zhamanak” believes that it is up to Armenia and its citizens to decide whether they want to join a Eurasian Union promoted by Russia. The paper says the Armenian government must make this clear in a “concrete and dignified” manner.