“Aravot” says “systemic changes” demanded and promised by the Armenian opposition must first of all take place in the minds of ordinary people. The paper complains that instead of fighting for their rights many Armenians are “just waiting to see when their end will come” and they are sure that “that end will be a bad one.” “No wonder that such people are awaiting someone who will solve their problems, give them something: a job, housing or even 10,000 drams,” it says in an editorial. “They get that [cash handout] and then wonder why they have a government that does not think about them. If you don’t think about yourself and expect a disastrous end instead, then why should anyone do that in your place?”
“Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” dismisses government loyalists’ complaints that the June 17 deadly incident at Yerevan’s Harsnakar restaurant is being “politicized” by the opposition and civil society. “Of course, the Harsnakar was a very serious blow for the authorities,” writes the paper. “Not because they mourned the death of a young doctor but because they fear that as a result of that they will have problems in the forthcoming elections. So the motives behind the authorities’ actions are political. The causes of the existing lawlessness are also political. [Robert] Kocharian’s bodyguards beat to death a man at the Poplavok [café in 2001] and nobody was punished. If the same had been done by, say, bodyguards of a lemonade factory manager, they would have definitely been still in prison. So the reason for that is the political status of the criminal.”
“Hayots Ashkhar” sees an unfolding public interest in the possibility of a single opposition candidate in next year’s Armenian presidential election. The paper says disapprovingly that the public will be closely monitoring related developments in the coming months despite knowing what their end result will be.
Karapet Rubinian, a former dissident member of the Armenian National Congress (HAK), tells “Zhoghovurd” that other prominent HAK figures have started leaving the opposition alliance of late because its leader, Levon Ter-Petrosian, apparently changed tack after the March 2008 post-election violence in Yerevan. Rubinian claims that Ter-Petrosian’s new strategy “doesn’t presuppose a struggle and envisages instead some secret deals that mean not telling the people the full truth.”