“Zhoghovurd” says that senior members of the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) were on Tuesday reluctant to comment on Gagik Tsarukian’s decision to return to politics and participate in the April parliamentary elections. “In this situation, Tsarukian’s return is a major disgrace for the HHK,” the paper claims, recalling scathing attacks on the Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK) founder that were launched by President Serzh Sarkisian and other senior Republicans in February 2015. It says that Tsarukian’s comeback is a serious blow to the HHK because the tycoon “will take both votes and human resources away from them.”
But as “Haykakan Zhamanak” points out: “Political analysts are almost unanimous in thinking that for Serzh Sarkisian, Gagik Tsarukian represents an additional option that would help him solve many issues and remove many obstacles standing in his way. A possibility that Gagik Tsarukian may have single-handedly decided to participate in the elections is not even considered.” Having said that, the paper notes, it is not clear whether Sarkisian and Tsarukian have given each other guarantees that there will be no repeat of their bitter February 2015 row.
“True, this is unlikely, given Gagik Tsarukian’s political intellect,” “Haykakan Zhamanak” goes on. “But people have an ability to learn and Tsarukian may play his own, double game this time around.”
“Gagik Tsarukian will serve as a lightning rod for [deflecting] public discontent with the socioeconomic situation,” writes “Zhamanak.” “At the same time, [his comeback] will enable Serzh Sarkisian to feel more confident with regard to the public and become less dependent on the current HHK majority.” The paper notes that Tsarukian on Tuesday lamented the economic situation in the country but did not blame the Armenian government for it.
“Aravot” says that whether or not he will be deemed eligible to run for the Armenian parliament, Prime Minister Karen Karapetian will strive for the HHK’s victory in the elections. The paper also has no doubts about the party’s ability to ensure election results desired by it. The only question, it says, is the distribution of a minority of seats in the next National Assembly.