In an editorial devoted to Pope John Paul’s visit to Armenia “Hayots Ashkhar” welcomes the strengthening of links between the Roman Catholic and Armenian Apostolic churches. The Armenian people, it says, must pay homage to a “spiritual institution” which wants to maintain friendly relations with them and was central to the development of the “European civilization.” But, the paper adds, Armenians must stay utterly loyal to their church, the true guardian of their traditions and values.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” runs a commentary on the aftermath of the terror attacks in the United States. It claims that despite verbal assurances of support for the planned US retaliatory steps Yerevan has effectively excluded itself from the international anti-terror coalition which is now taking shape.
“Zhamanak” writes that Azerbaijan is seeking to capitalize on the recent developments in order to secure a pro-Azerbaijani solution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Baku is going out of its way to portray Karabakh as a regional hub of terrorism. “One should not be surprised if they tomorrow try to persuade the world that Osama Bin Laden has Karabakh Armenian origin.” The paper also predicts that global attention to the fight against international terrorism may further delay the settlement of the Karabakh conflict.
“Aravot” and “Haykakan Zhamanak” carry the opposition Hanrapetutyun party’s statement urging supporters to attend its anti-government rally in Yerevan on Friday. The party claims that Robert Kocharian stands in the way of Armenia’s development and must be removed from office.
“Yerkir” comments on the implications of Hanrapetutyun leader Aram Sarkisian’s conspicuously friendly conversation last week with former president Levon Ter-Petrossian at a reception given by the former ruling HHSh on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of Armenia’s independence. The paper says the liberal HHSh and the somewhat nationalist Hanrapetutyun have no ideological similarities at all and gravitate towards each other solely out of political expediency. The two are united by a “thirst” for ousting Kocharian.
Minister for Industrial Infrastructures David Zadoyan, who has been in government under both Ter-Petrossian and Kocharian, says he wishes the two men had celebrated the independence anniversary together. He tells “Aravot” that some unnamed people are keen to “widen the crack” between them. Zadoyan also complains that individuals who fought for Armenia’s independence do not enjoy all due respect in Armenia these days, whereas those who opposed independence “have become Gods” and receive awards from Kocharian.