“Zhamanak” says that Russian President Vladimir Putin will personally decide whether to accept an official Armenian request to hand over a Russian soldier accused of murdering seven members of an Armenian family in Gyumri. “What is clear is that nothing depends on Armenia, or rather the Armenian authorities, on this issue,” writes the paper. “The same is not true for the Armenian society.” The question is, it says, how that society would react to Moscow’s possible refusal to extradite the soldier, Valery Permyakov. The paper believes that only a renewed wave of protests could force the Russians to cave in.
“Chorrord Ishkhanutyun” ridicules the Karabakh authorities’ claims that they used force to stop Armenian opposition activists from entering Karabakh in order to prevent clashes between them and local residents. “When one group of citizens beats up another group of citizens, it’s a disruption of public order. But when policemen do the beating, then it’s is a ‘prophylactic raid,’” the paper says mockingly. “True, it doesn’t really matter to beaten citizens. But it does matter in the legal sense. The population of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic is now left to thank its police for doing that hard work in its place.”
“Hayots Ashkhar” blames the oppositionists for Saturday’s violence, saying that their leaders, notably Zhirayr Sefilian, knew in advance what awaits us them at the Karabakh border. “They thereby provoked the clash,” says the pro-government paper. “Why did they need that? It was clear that their car procession will be stopped … Who did they want to discredit and for what purpose? This is the key question.”
“Zhoghovurd” reports that the administration of U.S. President Barack Obama is seeking a further reduction in U.S. economic assistance to Armenia. The paper claims that the dwindling volumes of that aid reflect Washington’s decreasing interest in Armenia.