“Aravot” says the players of Armenia’s national football team set an example for domestic political groups and many ordinary people when they crushed Denmark 4-0 in a World Cup qualifier in Copenhagen on Tuesday just days after suffering a humiliating defeat by Malta in Yerevan. “The Armenia footballers are real professionals,” the paper writes in a front-page editorial. “They don’t start whimpering after being struck in the nose. The same should be the case in politics. We will have a relative standstill and, therefore, an opportunity to concentrate at least until September. Raffi Hovannisian is right, the past electoral cycle was a defeat for not only the opposition but also the society. Political forces can spend the next two-three months making sense of what happened, analyzing and drawing conclusions. Unfortunately, no such trend is visible for the moment.”
“Zhamanak” says recent media allegations linking Prime Minister Tigran Sarkisian with a dubious offshore company are not a big deal by Armenian standards. “This would cause a scandal in countries where there is no widespread poverty, social injustice, emigration, arbitrary courts and many other problems of this kind,” writes the paper. “Such problems are so numerous and glaring in Armenia that they should have long led to resignations and political demands if there was real [government] concern about the public and social life.”
Interviewed by “Zhoghovurd,” Rustam Gasparian, a veteran of the Karabakh war and parliament deputy from the Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK), voices support for fellow veterans protesting in Yerevan to demand higher pensions. “Those people have now been left out,” he says. “They have the right to demand. This country today exists thanks to those people.” “Of course, the situation is shameful,” continues Gasparian. “Those guys are too proud to accept any assistance. They just want [proper] living conditions. They want jobs.”
“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” says fresh data from the World Bank shows that Armenia has the second highest poverty rate in the former Soviet Union after Tajikistan. “World Bank analysts are clearly not keeping up with time seeing as they did not hear Tigran Sarkisian’s recent speeches,” the pro-opposition paper comments ironically.