“Zhamanak” comments on the continuing exodus of parliament deputies from the Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK), saying that it is not yet clear what the defectors, most of them businesspeople, will do now. The paper wonders whether they will join another party or set up a grouping of their own. It notes that some of the defectors used to be affiliated with Artur Baghdasarian’s Orinats Yerkir party. The Armenian authorities have yet to indicate how they would try to use this new political “resource.”
“Hayots Ashkhar” warns the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) against recreating a coalition government that would presumably comprise representatives of the BHK. The pro-establishment paper believes that the HHK did not benefit from its past power-sharing arrangements with the BHK and other political groups. “[Junior] coalition partners made full use of all advantages of being part of the government before eventually leaving the coalition and saying that they are not responsible for government policies,” it says.
“Zhoghovurd” criticizes the Russian-led Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) for not reacting to rising tensions in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone that have left three more Armenian soldiers dead in recent days. The paper says that Azerbaijan’s continued policy of escalation could make a full-scale Armenian-Azerbaijani war inevitable. It says that Vahram Baghdasarian, the parliamentary leader of the ruling HHK, hinted earlier this week that Yerevan could appeal to the CSTO if fighting on the frontlines continues to intensify.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” scoffs at the reappointment of Artak Shaboyan as chairman of Armenia’s State Commission on the Protection of Economic Competition (SCPEC). “The structure headed by Shaboyan periodically launches some proceedings against economic entities, imposes fines, makes tough and intimidating statements,” writes the paper. “But it has never come close to investigating Armenia’s most monopolized market: sugar.” It says this fact makes mockery of the SCPEC’s declared anti-trust efforts. “So Artak Shaboyan is in the right place: at a state level, he protects our economy against competition,” “Haykakan Zhamanak” concludes sarcastically.