Serzh Sarkisian’s nomination by the Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) for prime minister was “totally anticipated” for “Zhoghovurd.” The paper says that Sarkisian has for years “consistently worked” to prolong his rule. “This is why he initiated [in 2014] the process of constitutional changes in the first place,” it says.
“Zhamanak” also comments on the nomination announced after Wednesday’s meeting in Yerevan of the HHK’s Executive Body. The paper notes that the announcement coincided with a presidential election in Azerbaijan used by the incumbent Ilham Aliyev for securing a fourth term in office. “Thus April 2018 is affirming or reaffirming government configurations or the status quo in Armenia and Azerbaijan,” it says. “And that is happening against the background of extremely high geopolitical tensions [between Russia and the West.]”
“168 Zham” reports that Wednesday also a unanimous ratification by Armenia’s parliament of the recently signed Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement (CEPA) with the European Union. “The agreement will come into force in full after being ratified by the EU member states and the European Parliament,” writes the paper. It says the CEPA holds a “key to Armenia’s salvation” not so much because of its political and economic provisions as “in the civilizational and geopolitical sense.”
“Haykakan Zhamanak” says that the latest round of U.S. sanctions against Russian officials, oligarchs and major companies may also hit Armenia’s economy. The paper argues that one of those oligarchs, Oleg Deripaska, owns the Armenal aluminum foil plant in Yerevan through his Rusal group. “One the one hand, Armenal-Rusal is an Armenian-based company and its products carry a ‘made in Armenia’ inscription,” it says. “On the other hand, that plant belongs to Deripaska.”