“Haykakan Zhamanak” comments on the announced “reconciliation” between Arsen Avetisian, the hospitalized chief executive and main shareholder of the Air Armenia airline, and Ruben Hayrapetian, the government-linked tycoon who allegedly ordered his beating on August 15. “A lot now depends on how law-enforcers will characterize that [reconciliation,]” writes the paper. “If Serzh Sarkisian has ordered the closure of the case, the law-enforcers will work together with the Avetisians … and get Avetisian’s wife to testify that her statements [accusing Hayrapetian of ordering the violence] resulted from her emotional state. Also, forensic experts will define Avetisian’s injuries in a way that will ensure that they are not covered by grave articles [of the Armenian Criminal Code.] Avetisian will then say that he was not kidnapped.” The paper warns that the Avetisians risk sharing responsibility for the cover-up with the authorities.
“Serzh Sarkisian may have decided to save Ruben Hayrapetian not only by not holding him accountable but also sparing him the need to give explanations to the [ruling] HHK,” writes “Zhamanak.” “At the same time, Serzh Sarkisian may be trying to show that he can settle such matters without the HHK’s intervention and, in general, is capable of single-handedly managing scandalous situations. But it is more likely that the incident was an unplanned headache, so to speak, for Serzh Sarkisian, especially now, and that he has simply decided to put an end to the affair in the most convenient fashion: reconciliation.”
“Hraparak” quotes HHK spokesman Eduard Sharmazanov as saying that the new obscure owner of Yerevan’s Hamalir sports and concert arena will not change its architectural design or open a casino there. “I insist that a casino cannot and will not be built or opened at Hamalir,” Sharmazanov told reporters late on Thursday.
“Zhoghovurd” reports on the Armenian government’s plans to renationalize the Hayfilm film studio that was privatized a decade ago. The paper agrees with government claims that its Armenian-American owners have failed to revive the moribund company with sizable investments.