“Haykakan Zhamanak” comments on late-night clashes in Ijevan between riot police and local residents protesting against a government ban on logging in nearby forests. The paper says that the Armenian authorities are right to crack down on a long-running deforestation of the area. “This is a very profitable business and profits generated by it have long fuelled entrenched local clans,” it says. “They felt safe in the past. But after the revolution the situation changed and the new authorities moved to stop industrial logging. In recent days, the noose [around those businesses] tightened and the problem became more acute.” The paper says the same clans organized Wednesday’s protests and ensuing clashes with security forces.
“Zhamanak” praises Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian’s comments made in an interview with RFE/RL’s Armenian service on Wednesday, saying that they reflect the public mood in the country. “There is no doubt that today’s judicial system and the Constitutional Court are incompatible with the New Armenia,” writes the paper. It says Pashinian voiced support for Vahe Grigorian, a Constitutional Court judge who has effectively declared seven other members of the court illegitimate.
“At the same time, it is obvious that even the prime minister does not yet have solutions, especially after reservations and critical comments voiced from Venice [Commission,]” the paper goes on. “In the coming months the solutions will definitely be found and we will have a Constitutional Court and judicial system corresponding to today’s Armenia. But Nikol Pashinian’s team will not be able to win back the lost time, the year wasted by it.”
“Zhoghovurd” says government bodies should have issued more detailed warnings about the contamination of Lake Sevan reported a few weeks ago. The paper says officials should have indicated concrete areas where swimming is considered hazardous, instead of effectively urging swimmers to stay away from the entire lake. It also calls for a “direct dialogue” between the government and private entrepreneurs operating resorts located along the Sevan coastline.