A leader of the opposition Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutyun) voiced skepticism on Friday over former President Levon Ter-Petrosian’s threats to trigger a popular uprising and bring down the government.
“Various politicians from various political forces other than Dashnaktsutyun have stated on numerous occasions that a revolution will take place in Armenia this fall and promised heated [political] springs, autumns, winters and summers, heated months and weeks,” said Vahan Hovannisian. “Some have even set dates for uprisings to erupt in Armenia. But nothing has happened.”
“Therefore, I want to stay away from such assessments [of Ter-Petrosian’s threats.] Let’s wait and see,” he told a news conference.
Ter-Petrosian and his Armenian National Congress (HAK) alliance have held two major anti-government demonstrations in Yerevan in the past month to demand the holding of snap national elections. The HAK leader has warned that President Serzh Sarkisian’s administration will face the kind of uprisings that have rocked the Arab world if it rejects his demands. He is scheduled to again rally supporters on March 17.
Hovannisian, whose party pulled out of Sarkisian’s governing coalition about two years ago, asserted that an anti-government revolution in the country is unlikely. The situation in Armenia is “explosive” but not revolutionary, he said.
“A revolutionary situation presupposes a revolutionary change in mentality, attitudes. Unfortunately, I don’t see that yet,” said Hovannisian.
“The explosive situation could lead to a coup and upheaval. But as a result of that upheaval, a revolution will not necessarily take place,” he added.