“Haykakan Zhamanak” says that Russia is already paying a heavy economic price for its ongoing annexation of Crimea. “The situation could change only if Russia radically reconsiders its stance on Ukraine,” claims the paper. “But there seems to be no such prospect. Unfortunately, this situation is also directly affecting Armenia. Our economic integration with Russia is so deep that we will not manage to emerge, as they say, from this situation with minimal losses. So let us start tightening our belts.”
“168 Zham” is skeptical about growing cooperation among Armenia’s four largest political parties opposed to the government. “When it comes to statements, everything is wonderful,” writes the paper. “But in reality, the more they talk about it the worse the situation becomes. Just as the establishment of democracy and elimination of monopolies is impossible under the current government, the consolidation of opposition forces dominated by the BHK and the HAK effectively precludes any real change.” The paper says the main reason for its pessimism is that the actions of the three opposition forces are dictated by Gagik Tsarukian’s BHK.
“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” says that judging from statements made by senior members of the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) the authorities are undaunted by the joint activities of the BHK and the established opposition. The paper says that this “self-confidence” may be based on a belief that the opposition consolidation will not translate into meaningful actions because the ruling regime has secret agents among opposition figures. The authorities, it speculates, may also think that the opposition will not provoke an anti-government popular uprising in view of external challenges facing Armenia. They might also be convinced that they would be able to quell any rebellion by force.
“Regardless of how internal political events develop, the authorities’ self-confidence is baseless,” contends “Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun.” “The situation in Armenia is only seemingly calm. In reality, the country is like a gunpowder keg. Any spark can cause a blast.”