“Zhamanak” condemns the Armenian authorities for their decision to prosecute one of the two brothers shot outside the Goris home of Suren Khachatrian, the former governor of the Syunik province. “Serzh Sarkisian is undoubtedly responsible for this because it is not accidental that he has said nothing on the ‘Liska’ case [in public,]” says the paper. It claims that Sarkisian is intent on acquitting Khachatrian’s son arrested in connection with the shooting. “Liska (Khachatrian) can thus become a walking symbol and talisman of Serzh Sarkisian’s European integration,” it concludes tartly.
“Aravot” also criticizes the criminal investigation into the Goris shootings, citing in particular “pro-Liska statements” made by Armenia’s chief military prosecutor, Gevorg Kostanian. The paper predicts that the judge in the case will also side with the former governor and rule that his men acted in self-defense.
“This case is noteworthy in that both sides are close to the authorities and have comparable clouts,” writes Lragir.am. “There were hopes that a purely legal decision will be made on the case. However, in all likelihood it has been decided to ensure that the parties suffer minimal losses. Accordingly, it is possible that they are blackmailing Budaghian to try to dissuade him from accusing Surik Khachatrian.”
“Zhoghovurd” comments on the latest Transparency International report which shows that Armenians remain skeptical about their leaders’ pledges to root out corruption. The paper says the report means that the public does not take seriously President Sarkisian’s promises to toughen the crackdown on corruption because it can see that they are not followed by “concrete steps.” “The fact that the authorities contented themselves with a number of empty statements even during a pre-election year gives one reason to expect that even PR manifestations of a fight against corruption will disappear in the post-election period.” The online journal notes in this regard Sarkisian’s angry reaction to the recent Audit Chamber report that alleged serious abuses in public procurements.