“Azg” continues to express disappointment with the course of Armenia’s presidential election campaign, criticizing the behavior of both the government and opposition camps. The paper deplores what it calls a low quality of debate among various candidates and their loyalists.
“Hayots Ashkhar” looks at the possibility of Levon Ter-Petrosian, Artur Baghdasarian and Raffi Hovannisian setting up a “Western-oriented” electoral alliance. “Regardless of whether these three forces and their leaders will manage to realize their intention to act in a united front, such an alliance would not be able to play the role of a Western alternative to the authorities,” says the paper. “The reason for that is that Armenia’s Western partners are well aware of the impossibility of any drastic change in our country’s foreign policy.”
“Aravot” carries an editorial on Wednesday’s violent incident during Ter-Petrosian’s rally in Artashat. “During the opposition rally insulting statements were addressed to our government,” the paper says sarcastically, mocking a police statement on the incident. “Naturally, virtuous and government-loving citizens did not like that and began defending our rulers and got beaten up by opposition activists as a result. Certainly, those who made ‘insulting’ statements are to blame for the incident. The opposition must not hold rallies in Artashat because people there are simply overwhelmed by their highly positive feelings towards the authorities. It would be better if there was no election campaign at all and if the government candidate got elected with the Communist-style 99.9 percent of the vote.”
“The authorities will fail to falsify the elections this time around,” contends “Zhamanak Yerevan.” “Unlike, the previous elections, mechanisms for falsifications have not yet decided and clarified yet. Not because that is difficult to do. It’s just that every conceived way [of vote rigging] has a counterweight.” The opposition paper therefore sees a “unique opportunity” for a democratic election in Armenia.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” reports that police released on Wednesday one of the four Ter-Petrosian loyalists arrested for allegedly assaulting a heckler during the ex-president’s rally in Talin. The paper says he was let go because of his poor health after the personal intervention of Deputy Defense Minister Manvel Grigorian.