Writing in “Zhamanak,” Aram Sarkisian, the leader of the once influential opposition Hanrapetutyun (Republic) party, makes clear that he too is against the controversial constitutional amendments that have been drafted by an Armenian presidential commission. He says that opposition parties rejecting the proposed constitutional reform must urge supporters to vote against it, rather than boycott a referendum which is expected to be held later this year. He says that a boycott would only make it easier for the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) to rig the referendum.
“Hraparak” quotes the HHK’s parliamentary leader, Vahram Baghdasarian, as saying that President Serzh Sarkisian will very soon hold final consultations on the constitutional changes with major Armenian factions. Baghdasarian suggests that the National Assembly will start debating the draft amendments as early as next month.
“Haykakan Zhamanak” reports that a group of Armenian student activists plan to boycott university classes in September in protest against the constitutional reform. One of them, Zaruhi Simonian, is quoted as saying that they will also join a “united front” against the reform planned by the opposition.
“Zhoghovurd” reports that President Serzh Sarkisian’s press secretary, Vladimir Hakobian, on Monday refused to comment on the violent attack on businessman Arsen Avetisian which he says was orchestrated by another, wealthier and more influential tycoon, Ruben Hayrapetian. Hakobian said only that law-enforcement authorities are now investigating Avetisian’s allegations. He therefore refused to be drawn on whether Hayrapetian will be told to resign as chairman of the Armenian Football Federation. The paper recalls that it was President Sarkisian who forced Hayrapetian to resign his parliament seat after his bodyguards beat to death a man in 2012.