Armenian newspapers continue to follow the situation around the Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK), which has found itself in dire straits after its embattled leader, tycoon Gagik Tsarukian steered clear of a decisive showdown with President Serzh Sarkisian and quit.
The “Aravot” editor sees also a “silver lining” in the decision of Tsarukian to quit the BHK leadership post and retire from politics. “The BHK, of course, has suffered a lot financially because of this situation created around the party, but it has also gained in some sense. And not only in terms of getting rid of unloyal members, but also in the sense that now members of this party, who in the past could only repeat what their leader was saying and could only praise his steps, will now be less restrained and the party leadership will need to think seriously about ideology, a future vision and mechanisms of party work not centered around one individual,” the paper says.
“Hraparak” says that the BHK has relocated its main offices from the brandy factory owned by Tsarukian to a building close to the Armenian government: “The government-affiliated agency on state property management has confirmed to us that the space is government property. And it is not surprising at all that it is the government that provides the BHK with office space, once again affirming the theory that the party that has declared itself to be opposition will continue to work for the government and upon its instructions.”
“Zhamanak” writes: “The BHK has, in fact, been turned into a “firing ground” within the government and the impression is that [President] Serzh Sarkisian has created this whole situation around the party for this very purpose, so that all the differences and contradictions within the government be settled at this “firing range” while the other parts of the government could live in peace. This will enable Sarkisian to prepare for the upcoming cycle of the reproduction of power in calmer conditions.”