“Haykakan Zhamanak” comments on the scandal caused by dubious letters of resignation submitted to the Central Election Commission (CEC) on behalf of 23 candidates elected to the parliament on the Tsarukian Bloc ticket. Twelve of them said on Wednesday that they want to take up their seats in the new National Assembly. The paper suggests that these candidates signed such letters before the April 2 elections and wonders why they were included on Gagik Tsarukian’s electoral list in the first place, why the tycoon decided afterwards that they should not become parliament deputies and who told them to defy him. It says that the 12 men most probably challenged Tsarukian in a coordinated manner.
“Zhamanak” says that the scandalous affair has exposed a “shameful picture within the Tsarukian Bloc.” “Somebody decided in place of those individuals that they will not get mandates,” writes the paper. “Who decided that? Gagik Tsarukian or Serzh Sarkisian? Or maybe both of them? That would have been done on Serzh Sarkisian’s terms because the opposite would have meant regime change. The interesting thing is that some people decided to go against Serzh Sarkisian’s decision.”
“Hraparak” says that Tsarukian loyalists elected to the National Assembly have shunned journalists since the April 2 elections for fear of losing their hard-won parliament mandates. “But after the publication of the lists [of elected deputies] the most intriguing moment began,” writes the paper. “Whispers coming from government corridors suggest that the process of the withdrawal of Tsarukian Bloc letters of resignation was not spontaneous. Either it was guided from the [ruling] HHK’s brain center or the challengers received its go-ahead to act against Tsarukian. The HHK needed such an opportunity to complement its 58 seats with extra 8-10 seats.”
“Aravot” says that the defiant Tsarukian Bloc candidates are “absolutely right from the legal standpoint.”“In the political sense, they may also have their arguments,” the paper says. “But in the case of our National Assembly legal and political standards are practically not applicable. In our country things are guided by thuggish standards whereby ‘Tsarukian doesn’t want you, what the hell are you doing?’ Or, ‘During the entire pre-election period you were glorifying Tsarukian, who did you a favor by including you on his list; why are you now acting against the will of the man glorified by you?’ It would be unfair to say that these thuggish approaches are totally wrong. They are indicative of a certain social level which characterizes not only that political force.”