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“Haykakan Zhamanak” looks at possible implications for Armenia of Donald Trump’s victory in the U.S. presidential election. In particular, the paper expects Trump to completely “cede” international mediation of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict to Russian President Vladimir Putin. It points Trump’s Russia-related statements made during the U.S. election campaign.

“The U.S. is the kind of nation where a presidential election inevitably has a substantial impact on the global security, economy and policy,” writes “Zhamanak.” “And Armenia is a country located in a region serving as a crossroads for corresponding developments, including on a number of very important issues. On top of this, there is the question of U.S.-Russian relations put in the context of Russia’s close ties with or strong influence on Armenia. Trump is seen as a supporter of improving America’s relations with Russia. It would be more accurate to conclude, though, that with regards to foreign policy he is a dark horse for the time being.”

Given these circumstances, “Zhamanak” wonders what the new U.S. administration will do about U.S.-Armenian relations, Turkish-Armenian relations and the Karabakh conflict. “The U.S. is an established, systemic state where fortunately individuals decide few things when it comes to key developments,” it says.

“Zhoghovurd” comments on Armenia’s own electoral races. The paper notes that Armenians will elect this spring a new national parliament and Yerevan’s mayor and municipal council in the space of one month. This means that official campaigns for those elections will overlap. Tigran Mukuchian, the chairman of the Central Election Commission (CEC), assures the paper that this fact will not lead to any logistical or legal problems.

Speaking to “168 Zham,” Hrant Bagratian, a parliament deputy and a former prime minister, welcomes the impending decrease in the price of natural gas in Armenia but says that it is not sufficient. Bagratian argues that the retail gas price for households in Russia will still be much lower than in Armenia. He says that the gap between the gas tariffs in the two countries must be narrowed because Armenia is a member of the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union.

(Tigran Avetisian)

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