“Haykakan Zhamanak” blasts unnamed political parties which it says used the April 24 genocide commemorations to spread their election propaganda. Their leaders, according to the paper, “did not even try to hide the pre-election character of their speeches” as they were interviewed by television reporters against the backdrop of Yerevan’s genocide memorial. “The thing is that many of the political forces campaigning for the elections have nothing to say or do. On the other hand, they can’t join the campaign and say nothing. And for those who have nothing to say, April 24 is the most convenient moment to say something.”
“Orran” also addresses this phenomenon, saying that “the partisan spirit was more real than the spirit of homeland on this April 24.” Those parties’ march to Tsitsernakabert Hill was a “propaganda campaign for May 25,” the paper says.
“Hayots Ashkhar” complaints that the post-election developments have taken too much of the people’s time. “Unforgivably, we are losing the tempo and time needed for addressing our really momentous issues,” the paper says. It claims that the Armenian “state machine” malfunctions at present, with many government bureaucrats only imitating appropriate activity. “In such conditions, people can not pin hopes on the rule of law and fairness of government bodies. [They rely] only on themselves. Then why should they need a government?”
“Yerkir” says people who committed “injustice” are now loudly speaking of the need to establish justice, while “failed dictators” promise to bring about democracy. The paper also laments what it thinks is a “lack of progress” in the way Armenian parties conduct their campaigns. It says this shows that they have no clear message to the electorate.
Artashes Tumanian, the chief of President Kocharian’s staff and a top parliamentary candidate of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutyun), does not rule out the possibility of becoming Armenia’s next prime minister, in an interview with “Haykakan Zhamanak.” “There could arise circumstances under which I can work [as prime minister],” Tumanian says, adding that it is up to Kocharian to pick a premier. “It is not a particularly nice thing to be prime minister in a society where there is a serious social discontent, polarization. No government will manage to radically change the situation in the next four or five years.” Tumanian also thinks that the Artarutyun alliance of Stepan Demirchian will have a “considerable representation” in the next Armenian parliament. He says even the former ruling HHSh can pass the 5 percent vote threshold.
In an interview with “Aravot,” the head of the Armenian Public Television and Radio, Aleksan Harutiunian, says he “largely accept[s] criticism” of the state-run broadcaster’s coverage of the elections. Harutiunian says will try to ensure a more objective and unbiased coverage of the upcoming parliamentary elections. He goes on to declare that the RFE/RL Armenian Service has been the most impartial and informative of news organizations broadcasting to Armenia since its independence.