“Iravunk” reports that a “traditional” gun battle broke out in the middle of a village in southern Armenia on the night from June 6-7. “The shots were fired by people who have always been known for various services provided to the authorities. That is why the gang never gets punished for its deeds,” the paper says, adding that among them were relatives of Minister for Local Government Hovik Abrahamian.
“Aravot” reports a similar armed clash between “two groups of young people” in the northern town of Vanadzor. The paper says that some of them are related to Vanadzor Mayor Samvel Darpinian and that their houses were promptly searched by police. But it doubts that any of them will be brought to justice, arguing that the mayor has close ties with Prime Minister Andranik Markarian.
“I think that the president of Azerbaijan and his entourage have become hostages of their own statements,” deputy parliament speaker Vahan Hovannisian tells “Hayots Ashkhar,” commenting on the failure of the Armenian-Azerbaijani peace talks in Bucharest. “Those statements were made during election campaigns, and as a consequence Azerbaijani society has developed a government-inspired anti-Armenian hysteria.” Hovannisian believes that stronger international pressure on Azerbaijan “would not be useful” in this situation, saying that it would only heighten anti-Armenian sentiment in Azerbaijan.
“Robert Kocharian can note with satisfaction that he managed to shut with a bang the window of opportunity for a [Karabakh] settlement at Bucharest and did not have to stir up an artificial parliamentary or political crisis in Armenia for that purpose,” writes “Iravunk.” “That the window really closed is evident because the next meeting of the presidents will take place no sooner than the end of the year. In the meantime, if there will be meetings of the foreign ministers they won’t make any difference at all.”
“Robert Kocharian’s policy is a direct application of Russia’s experience on Armenian soil,” editorializes “Aravot.” “For instance, [Russian President Vladimir] Putin closed NTV and Kocharian closed A1+. Putin destroyed parliament as an institution having an influence on the state and our president did the same thing. Putin reinstated the Soviet Union’s anthem and Kocharian wants to reinstate Soviet Armenia’s anthem.”
“Haykakan Zhamanak” reports that the Orinats Yerkir party released on Thursday its “first opposition statement.” The party expressed serious concern at the ongoing “mass dismantling” of kiosks and market stalls across Yerevan. It considers the government actions as a severe blow to small businesses, reports the paper.