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“Zhoghovurd” claims that Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian is not providing sufficient information to the public through his press office about what he has been doing during his absence from Armenia since August 10: “After a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow Sarkisian left for Brazil. We learn from photographs released by the official websites of the president and the National Olympic Committee of Armenia that Sarkisian is having a good time in Rio, takes pictures with athletes, follows their performances at gyms, etc. In short, we can say that Sarkisian is actively on vacation. But he is a head of state and must be accountable to the public. Yet, no official information has been released about Sarkisian’s visits. It would be good if he presented some information on the results of his meeting with Putin. But he hasn’t. Instead, he was enjoying the Olympic victory of Greco-Roman wrestler Artur Aleksanian in Rio.”

“Haykakan Zhamanak” says Aleksanian’s sporting a T-shirt with the portrait of Robert Abajian, a soldier who was killed in the April fighting in Nagorno-Karabakh, during a medal ceremony in Rio came as a surprise to the late serviceman’s family who appear to have mixed feelings about it. “People called from everywhere to tell us about the event,” Abajian’s grandfather, Gevorg Abajian, tells the newspaper. “On the one hand, it was a nice thing to do, but on the other hand, it was kind of saddening to see it, because we feel bad every time the matter comes up. Still, we are glad that he [Aleksanian] showed [Robert’s image] to the entire world.”

“Aravot” asks expert of the Armenian Center for Democracy, Security and Development Marta Ayvazyan whether the recent trilateral summit of Russia, Iran and Azerbaijan in Baku and their agreement to meet again in Iran in 2017 means that Moscow is getting engaged in a new project isolating Armenia and, at the same time, blocks possible new projects between Armenia and Iran. The expert answers: “By engaging in one project or another Russia simply pursues its own interests, and if it does that at the expense of Armenia’s interests, blocking Armenia’s opportunities of developing cooperation not only with Iran, but also with European Union countries and other structures, then responsibility for this lies not with Russia, but with our government, which, for well known reasons, is not in a position to defend the interests of the Republic of Armenia. Iran had repeatedly stated about its intentions to deepen cooperation with Armenia, to sell natural gas to Armenia at prices that are considerably lower [than those at which Armenia buys gas from Russia] and about its being interested in exporting energy resources to Europe via Armenia. But Armenia did not respond properly, failing to take the necessary steps when they were needed.”

(Tigran Avetisian)

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