“For almost 20 years the opposition in Armenia has made practically the same characterizations of the authorities: a criminal regime, plunderers, Mafiosi and so on,” writes “Aravot.” “Just how accurate those characterizations are is a separate subject. But it is worth paying attention to two circumstances. First, repetition can be tiring. Second, the public has after all undergone some civil development in 20 years and more information is accessible to it, especially to its young segment, now than in the 1990s. Therefore, it would be good if the opposition not only voiced criticism but also explained to voters why it is better than the ruling coalition.”
Armen Badalian, a pro-opposition political pundit, tells “Haykakan Zhamanak” that the notoriously inaccurate vote registers will be key to the outcome of next month’s parliamentary elections. “If they [the opposition] managed to have those lists cleaned up we will have one picture in the parliament,” he says. “If they don’t, we will have a different picture.” Badalian claims that the pro-government Orinats Yerkir party and the opposition Zharangutyun would be among the main beneficiaries of electoral fraud related to the voter lists.
“Yerkir” complains about a lack of mutual trust among the country’s three main opposition forces and Gagik Tsarukian’s Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK) that agreed last week to set up a joint center tasked with fighting against electoral fraud. “This is a legacy that has been acquired as a result of the political culture formed in the last four or five years,” editorializes the paper. “In the run-up to the elections that deficit is turning into an extremely serious psychological factor that … can strangle any healthy initiative conceived and born in the political arena.”
Interviewed by “Zhoghovurd,” Rustam Gasparian, a parliament deputy from the BHK, that the government and the Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) are by far the strongest electoral actors. “Just how powerful they are in politics will be clear after the elections,” he says. Gasparian also says that the governing coalition comprising the HHK, the BHK and Orinats Yerkir was effectively dissolved with the start of the election campaign. “Each party is now working for itself separately,” he says.