(Saturday, May 12)
Armenia’s newly appointed Education Minister Arayik Harutiunian tells “Zhoghovurd” that he is planning significant reforms of public education in the country and will hold substantive discussions on the matter with experts and civil society members. “Experts and I have the impression that there are many problems which have not been solved until now due to a lack of political will,” he says. “Many of those problems can be solved quickly. They include the politicization of public schools, [illegal] collection of money [from students,] the politicization of universities and the problem of their effective management and a lack of autonomy.”
Interviewed by “Hraparak,” Edmon Marukian, a leader of the opposition Yelk alliance, says that the new Armenian government headed by Nikol Pashinian is not seeking to replace the current leaders of the National Assembly mostly affiliated with the Republican Party (HHK) for the time being. He also reuses to speculate about possible defections from the HHK’s parliamentary faction which would cause Serzh Sarkisian’s party to lose its majority in the National Assembly.
Speaking to “Aravot,” Alen Simonian, a senior member of Pashinian’s Civil Contract party, downplays criticism of some of the appointments made by the new prime minister. He says that the criticism is the result of misunderstandings and will not damage the new government’s popularity.
Ryszard Czarnecki, a deputy speaker of the European Parliament, tells “168 Zham” that Pashinian’s election as prime minister opened up “new opportunities” for Armenia’s relationship with the European Union. “There are also concerns that the interim government will concentrate on organizing fresh parliamentary elections and avoid dealing with foreign policy issues in earnest,” he says. He says Pashinian’s government should take “bolder” steps in the international arena than the previous Armenian governments did.