Commenting on Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamian’s visit to Tehran, “Zhamanak” says that Armenia’s “special” relationship with Iran has a “huge potential” for further development. But that, the paper says, depends in large measure on the end of the Islamic Republic’s long-running confrontation with the West. Armenia’s relations with Russia are also a factor, it says. “Russia is clearly trying to control Armenia’s relations with Iran and prevent developments that would give Armenia economic alternatives,” it says. The paper believes that Abrahamian lacks the intelligence and competence to deal with such a complex issue. Not surprisingly, it says, no “concrete agreements” were announced during or after his trip to Tehran.
“Chorrord Ishkhanutyun” is unconvinced by the ruling Republican Party’s claims that Armenia’s political leadership is not worried about the ongoing joint anti-government campaign conducted by three major opposition parties. “Serzh Sarkisian is clearly scared,” claims the pro-opposition daily. “He is scared not so much because this movement is more powerful than the previous ones and has greater chances of success but because Serzh Sarkisian has such a habit. He is scared of everything.”
“Aravot” believes that Armenia needs “more fundamental solutions” than the ones that are favored by its current political elite. “Perhaps there are naïve people who believe in assurances like ‘just wait a little and everything will be alright’ or ‘everything will be alright when we come to power,’” editorializes the paper. “That can be attributed to our naivety. All key political players have already been able to come [to power] and go. All of them have done a ‘good’ job. What the people expected has never happened and will not happen until we reaffirm our desire to have an independent state and decide in what kind of a state we want to live.”
Citing income declarations filed by the 131 members of the National Assembly, “168 Zham” reports that 19 Armenian deputies admit being millionaires. “Nine of them are members of the [ruling] HHK’s parliament faction, nine others from [Gagik Tsarukian’s] BHK and the remaining one is not affiliated with any party,” says the paper. “As of late 2013, the deputies of Armenia’s National Assembly owned a combined $235.1 million worth of assets. The figure stood at $172.7 million in late 2012.”