“Zhoghovurd” says that the ruling HHK will again use its administrative resources in the municipal elections in Yerevan slated for May 14. “It is not accidental that the incumbent Mayor Taron Markarian will not go on leave during the pre-election period,” writes the paper. It dismisses HHK claims that Markarian will participate in the campaign only after work hours.
“Zhamanak” says that the mayoral race in Yerevan is obviously not as important as the April 2 parliamentary elections were. The paper says that despite the central role of Prime Minister Karen Karapetian in the parliamentary election campaign the ruling party won the legislative polls primarily thanks to its “old and notorious figures.” It claims that the latter are now at odds with Karapetian and his loyalists over the distribution of post-election “spoils.”
“Chorrord Ishkhanutyun” derides President Serzh Sarkisian’s “pathetic” speech at a conference in Yerevan on Thursday that was organized by the Armenian ministries of defense and education. The pro-opposition paper claims that the speech was “absolutely unrelated to reality.” “The important thing is not to give a nice speech,” it says. “Any student of the Philology Department [of Yerevan State University] can write such a speech and smoothly read it out. The important thing is to have substance behind that speech, rather than to say one thing and to do the exact opposite. Though in the case of Serzh Sarkisian, the society has long been accustomed to that.”
“Haykakan Zhamanak” describes as a “serious development” law-enforcement authorities’ decision to launch a criminal investigation into a secretly made recording suggesting that employees of the HHK-affiliated businessman Artak Sargsian risked losing their jobs if they did not help him get reelected to the parliament. The paper says that the authorities usually cover up such embarrassing revelations that warrant criminal cases. It suggests that they may have decided to avoid such a cover-up this time around because of concerns about the scandal voiced by the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan.