“Zhamanak” speculates that Prime Minister Tigran Sarkisian deliberately sounded vague about Armenia’s membership in the Russian-led customs on Thursday to make sure that “when he is sacked he is perceived to be a principled leader who stood by his views and did not cling to his post.”
Vahram Atanesian, a senior Nagorno-Karabakh lawmaker, tells “Hayots Ashkhar” that the European Union’s Eastern Partnership program is aimed at creating a “buffer zone” between the EU and Russia. He says that Armenia is therefore right to opt for “deeper integration” with Russia. “From this standpoint, the entry into the customs union was a sound and politically flawless decision,” he says.
“Aravot” claims that none of Armenia’s major opposition parties has explicitly spoken out against joining the customs union. The paper says they have only criticized the way in which President Serzh Sarkisian has handled the process. The differences on the issue between the opposition and the government are merely “tactical” ones. The paper adds that the opposition forces are also exploiting the fact that the terms of Armenia’s union membership have not been clarified so far in order to avoid passing judgment on its wisdom. They are well aware that “no such documents exist” and that the issue is a political one because Armenia is hardly of any interest to Russia as an economy, according to “Aravot.”
“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” says that President Serzh Sarkisian tried to raise funds for more infrastructure projects in Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh when he met with Russian-Armenian businessmen after inaugurating an Armenian cathedral in Moscow this week. The pro-opposition paper is highly skeptical about the positive effects of such assistance, saying that only business investments would make a difference in the country. “But investments are not made,” it says. “Furthermore, Armenia’s authorities and, which is the same thing, business elite themselves invest abroad.”