“168 Zham” deplores the failure by President Serzh Sarkisian’s domestic critics to provoke the kind of an outcry, which followed the signing of controversial Turkish-Armenian protocols in 2008, because of his response to Kazakhstan’s pro-Azerbaijani condition for Armenia’s accession to the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union. “What happened [at the union’s founding summit] in Astana last week is much more dangerous, much more anti-Armenian and much more inadmissible than any document applying to Turkish-Armenian relations,” writes the paper. “But the continuing silence of our oppositionists is much stronger than the silence maintained Serzh Sarkisian when he sat next to [Nursultan] Nazarbayev and [Vladimir] Putin.”
“Zhamanak” criticizes leaders of Armenia’s four main political parties challenging Sarkisian for not discussing “the dangerous developments in Astana” at their latest meeting held on Monday. “The quartet should have explained things to the public, voiced opinions and demands to the authorities,” writes the paper. It says this is important especially considering the fact that the Armenian government will hold more behind-the-scene talks with the Eurasian Union before a July 1 deadline that was set at Astana. “If the quartet sees no problems … it should have calmed the society and told people not to panic,” it says. “However, the quartet is not doing anything.”
Eduard Sharmazanov, a deputy parliament speaker and the spokesman for the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK), assures “Hayots Ashkhar” that Nazarbayev’s pro-Azerbaijani stance is no cause for concern. “Neither the Customs Union nor the Eurasian Union is an organization that helps to resolve conflicts and border issues,” says Sharmazanov. “The Republic of Armenia is seeking to join the Customs Union and the Eurasian Economic Union not for discussing the Karabakh conflict. Of course it’s unpleasant. Of course the Eurasian Union summit was not the right place [for setting conditions for Armenia.]” But Armenia will never allow the Russian-led union to include the Armenian-Azerbaijani dispute on its agenda,” says Sharmazanov.