Gagik Tsarukian will stick to his opposition stance if he decides to return to active politics, according to his longtime associate, Naira Zohrabian.
Zohrabian, who took over leadership at the Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK) after Tsarukian announced his resignation from the chairman’s post and retirement from politics under government pressure in February 2015, said on Monday that the currently second largest parliamentary party will continue to push for a regime change by means of elections.
Tsarukian hinted at his possible political comeback last Wednesday as he visited an international business exhibition in Yerevan. In his remarks at an impromptu press briefing then he was careful to avoid criticism of President Serzh Sarkisian and his ruling Republican Party of Armenia, instead saying that he did not bear a grudge against anyone who ousted him from politics almost two years ago, including those who made personal insults against him in the process. At the same time, the wealthy businessman renewed his criticism of the authorities’ handling of economic affairs as well as their social policies.
Zohrabian, who has been with Tsarukian since he founded the BHK in 2006, went on to criticize the government for its policies, saying that nothing has changed in Armenia since February 2015 for them to alter their opposition stance.
“There has been no positive change in our country. The problems that our country faces in its foreign policy and especially the domestic challenges, including economic problems, have not been solved, but, on the contrary, have aggravated, and there is no reason why we should change our position. I am sure that Tsarukian’s views have not changed either, because he made it clear with some of his messages that he regards the situation as serious and troubling. So, a regime change continues to remain on the BHK agenda, and we will seek this change through elections before which only a few months remain,” the current BHK leader underscored.
Incidentally, Tsarukian made another joint public appearance with President Sarkisian on Monday. The latter attended a ceremonial opening of a sports and wellness center constructed by Tsarukian, who is also president of the National Olympic Committee of Armenia.