In an interview with “Hayastani Hanrapetutyun,” the chief of staff of the Armenian armed forces, Colonel-General Mikael Harutiunian, lays the blame for the recent truce violations on the Azerbaijani side. Harutiunian speculates that some Azerbaijani leaders may have been buoyed by rumors that the Unites States is to deploy troops in Azerbaijan and “decided to show off their combat spirit.” “Also, it may well be that instability connected with the upcoming elections negatively affected the disciple of Azerbaijan’s army.” “Either way,” Harutiunian goes on, “I don’t see a serious danger here. After all, the Azerbaijanis today perfectly understand that they are unable to wage war. So we are not taking any special measures in connection with incidents on the border. There is no need for that.”
“The situation in the country is so stable that even that the number one person responsible for that stability, Robert Kocharian, allows himself to rest on a French seaside,” “Ayb-Fe” notes with irony. The paper predicts that Kocharian will experience “sad days starting from September, especially on the external front, in connection with the Karabakh negotiations.”
Meanwhile, a leading Kocharian ally, Vahan Hovannisian of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutyun), continues to make a case for a sweeping overhaul of Armenia’s law-enforcement agencies. Speaking to “Aravot,” Hovannisian says that the presidential Security Council run by Defense Minister Serzh Sarkisian has not met for years and does not seem to perform its functions. Even if the council operates in practice, its decisions are not binding for the president, the Dashnaktsutyun leader complains.
“Iravunk” says the authorities may be looking for ways of ending the latest wave of mafia-style crimes in Armenia as “it is clear that the existing ‘rules of the game’ no longer satisfy anyone, including those who were happy with them only six months ago.”
“Corruption in this country is destroying, like a rust, state structures, the financial-economic system and, more alarmingly, law-enforcement bodies,” editorializes “Hayots Ashkhar.” “Corruption greatly jeopardizes the country’s security.” The biggest crime of corrupt officials is that they leave a “generation of thieves.” “All of these luxury villas, casinos and other places and posh foreign cars are just an illusion of wealth, like a party during a plague epidemic. If we really want to become a state, the key to our future is hard work,” the pro-Kocharian paper concludes.
“Individuals who got access to power by means of political corruption will never combat corruption,” writes the Dashnaktsutyun weekly “Yerkir.” “The removal of the political causes of corruption is contingent on increasing the role in the government’s formation played by those political forces who can come to power with the help of the public, not clans or groupings.”