“Hayots Ashkhar” says President Serzh Sarkisian’s latest visit to Moscow is aimed at addressing a “decrease in mutual trust in Armenian-Russian relations that has been observed in recent months.” The pro-presidential paper says both Armenia and Russia realize that only they stand to lose from this fact.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” quotes Edmond Marukian, an independent Armenian parliamentarian, as saying that the talks between Sarkisian and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin will not make a difference and Armenia will finalize its Association Agreement with the European Union in November. “I don’t think that we need to coordinate our actions aimed at the development of our country with other states,” says Marukian. “I don’t think that the president of Armenia needs to get a permission from the president of any other country. It doesn’t matter whether that is Russia or any other state.”
“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” comments on the controversy surrounding the ongoing reconstruction of Yerevan’s central covered market owned by “oligarch” Samvel Aleksanian. The paper says the Armenian authorities must finally clarify whether they think that the reconstruction is legal. If so, they should also explain who allowed Aleksanian to redesign the market building. But if the construction work is illegal, the paper says, they should fine and prosecute the tycoon, it says. “These are the only options,” it says.
“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun goes on to claim that Aleksanian asserts his business interests with the same methods that are used by President Sarkisian for warding off challenges to his rule. The pro-opposition paper argues that scores of teachers and other public sector employees were forced to attend Sarkisian’s election campaign rallies. The several hundred people who rallied in support of Aleksanian on Monday were subjected to similar pressure, it says.
“Hraparak” says those people “should not be underestimated, hated or despised” by the civil society. “They are part of our society, one of its characteristic components that requires compassion,” writes the paper. “We all are to blame for the formation of this community.”