“It is hard to tell whether we are witnessing a real fight against corruption or its imitation,” “Zhamanak” writes, commenting on the arrest of three senior officials from the Armenian Defense Ministry. “After all, the arrest of a general is not a joke. But then again, there have been no less clamorous arrests in Armenia before and they eventually ended in quiet pardons, without producing any systemic effects,” writes the paper. It says that if the Armenian authorities really want to tackle corruption in Armenia they cannot target only the military. Other state institutions are also rife with corruption, it says.
“Zhoghovurd” reports that President Serzh Sarkisian mentioned the recent escalation of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict when he addressed a Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) summit held in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana on Tuesday. Sarkisian effectively complained that EEU member states failed to voice support for Armenia even though all of them are also part of another Russian-led structure, the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO). He also made clear that Armenia will do everything to protect Karabakh against another Azerbaijani attack. This is construed by the paper as a veiled threat to pull Armenia out of the EEU and the CSTO.
“Chorrord Ishkhanutyun” reacts to another interview given by Samvel Babayan, a former commander of Karabakh’s army. “He simply openly stated something which no government official or politician had said before,” writes the paper. “His message was as follows: Azerbaijan is very seriously preparing for a long war and it is very likely that tens of thousands tons of shells will fall upon Armenian and Karabakh cities, including Yerevan.” While largely agreeing with Babayan, the paper wonders why he did not ring the alarm bells earlier, notably during the 1998 ouster of then President Levon Ter-Petrosian.
Citing the National Statistical Service (NSS), “Haykakan Zhamanak” reports that foreign direct investment in Armenia continued to fall rapidly in the first quarter of this year. “This seems to reflect the overall state of our economy, which the authorities carefully try to hide behind slick government data,” says the paper.