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“Zhamanak” reports that Russian TV channels continue to air statements by Russian commentators condemning Armenia’s Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement (CEPA) with the European Union. The paper notes that one of those channels, NTV, is controlled by the Gazprom energy conglomerate that also owns Armenia’s natural gas distribution network. It claims that NTV is now also giving a platform to Russian “mercenaries of Azerbaijani propaganda.”

“Serzh Sarkisian has not heard any [CEPA-related] rebuke from [Vladimir] Putin,” continues “Zhamanak.” “Has he heard the litany of abuse coming from the [Russian] TV channels? Is the main thing for Sarkisian is to have Putin say nothing and then turn a blind eye to what others say?” asks the paper. It says that official Yerevan must react to the Russian attacks.

“Zhoghovurd” notes that the attacks came just days after another Russian TV station, controlled by the Russian Defense Ministry, apologized to the Armenian government for airing an extremely critical report on Armenia. “Now a private Russian TV company is staging an anti-Armenian show, fomenting anti-Armenian sentiment among Russians,” writes the paper. “Of course, official Moscow can say that it’s a private company and its guests are private individuals. Yet the fact is that all Russian TV companies are under total government control.” The paper fears that such “anti-Armenian actions” will intensify soon.

“Aravot” questions the willingness and ability of Armenia’s Special Investigative Service (SIS) to combat corruption more vigorously in line with an order that was issued to the law-enforcement by President Sarkisian this week. The paper says in this regard that the authorities cannot dupe EU officials into thinking that they really fight against corruption. “Ukraine’s example is a case in point,” it says. “The leadership of that country has failed to fool the Europeans into thinking that it is fighting against corruption. And the European Union has somewhat cut financial assistance to them. It’s not that nothing is done in Armenia, as evidenced by the discontent of our [corrupt] middle-level bureaucracy … But little has changed in reality and unless practical steps are taken they won’t manage to fool anyone.”

(Tigran Avetisian)

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