In an article titled “Cop Revenge,” “Haykakan Zhamanak” reports that Grisha Virabian, an opposition activist from the town of Artashat who underwent surgery as a result of a police interrogation last April, is set to go on trial. Virabian is prosecuted for hitting one of his interrogators with a mobile phone recharging device. The paper says prosecutors have completed their inquiry into the “assault on a state official performing their duties” and filed the case to a court.
“With this disgraceful case the prosecutor’s office has proven that it is no different from ignorant policemen torturing a person,” “Haykakan Zhamanak” comments furiously. “Instead of punishing the policemen who have abused their power and grown impudent…the prosecutor’s office has decided that it is Grisha Virabian who is the culprit.”
“Hayots Ashkhar” reports that Prime Minister Andranik Markarian’s Republican Party (HHK) will likely back the candidate from its coalition partner Orinats Yerkir Party in the August 29 parliamentary by-election in the Yeghvard constituency. “The overall approach is that the coalition supports the candidacy of Artak Sargsian,” the HHK’s parliamentary leader, Galust Sahakian, is quoted as saying. According to the deputy chairman of Orinats Yerkir, Mher Shahgeldian, that support means local Republican structures “will work in our candidate’s favor.”
“Haykakan Zhamanak” says another candidate, Aghasi Gasparian, has filed a lawsuit against Sargsian’s main rival Arayik Hayrapetian, who is reportedly backed by Prosecutor-General Aghvan Hovsepian, accusing him of misleading the local electoral body about the size of his real property. “That accusation is a nonsense,” Hayrapetian says. He believes that the Orinats Yerkir hopeful was behind the lawsuit. A senior member of a pressure group set up by the chief prosecutor and other prominent natives of the Aparan region issues a stern warning to the rival camp. “People and forces working with such methods must understand that such tactics will mark the start of their end,” Levon Khachatrian says.
“Hayots Ashkhar” claims that Azerbaijan is “blackmailing” the United States to clinch concessions in the resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. The paper says Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mamedyarov’s visit to Moscow is a veiled threat to change Baku’s pro-Western foreign policy orientation.