(Saturday, March 1)
The 6th anniversary of the 2008 bloody events in Yerevan are the main theme of Armenian press commentary.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” stands by its view that Serzh Sarkisian and his predecessor Robert Kocharian deliberately ordered security forces to shoot and kill opposition protesters on March 1-2, 2008 in order to prevent the loss of their power and “enormous wealth.” The paper says that the two men have benefited from the bloodshed, unlike Armenia which has paid a huge economic price for their continued rule. It says the economic situation has since been steadily worsening and the country now risks losing its sovereignty.
“Zhoghovurd” speaks of “bitter disappointment” with authorities’ failure to identify and punish those responsible for the deaths of 10 people and the impotence of Armenian opposition groups. “The forces that fought side by side six years ago will commemorate today the victims separately,” writes the paper.
“Zhamanak” believes that the Armenian society is “in debt to the memory of the victims” because it has failed to ensure that their killers have been brought to justice.
“Hayots Ashkhar,” meanwhile, demands punishment for “the individuals who armed the crowd with weapons, batons and metal bars” and provided material assistance to protesters that were camped out in central Yerevan in February-March 2008. The pro-presidential paper does not name the “organizers of the riots.”
“Hraparak” says thousands of people will take to the streets of Yerevan on Saturday to not only remember the unrest victims but also hear words of hope and optimism from opposition leaders. “They want to see unity in the opposition ranks and to believe that the next elections will be more democratic and that our country will not be anybody’s vassal or outpost,” editorializes the paper.