“Zhoghovurd” says that contrary to opposition claims the current Armenian government has achieved positive changes “in many fields.” In particular, says the paper, the government decided on Thursday to raise the salaries of firefighters and other employees of the Ministry for Emergency Situations by almost 30 percent. It also approved a six-fold rise in one-off payments to families having their first child and a 41 percent increase in the monthly benefits of working mothers of young children. “Low salaries have always one of the main sources of complaints in our county,” writes the pro-government daily. “This probably explains why the problem is at the center of the government’s attention.”
“Haykakan Zhamanak” comments on criminal charges brought against former Defense Minister Vigen Sargsian and a former chief of the Armenian police, Alik Sargsian. “Naturally, opposition propaganda construed these facts as the start of a new phase of political persecution and vengeance, an attempt to ‘dismantle’ security agencies and so on,” writes the paper controlled by Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian. It denies those claims, saying the new authorities are simply uncovering abuses and corrupt practices that were the norm under the former ruling regime. It seems to agree with suggestions that virtually all former senior officials committed such abuses.
“Short-term interests presuppose that it is not worth digging into the past of former senior security officials because that is fraught with a certain internal political destabilization. But long-term interests oblige [the current authorities] to thoroughly cleanse security agencies from those officers who have been involved in some corruption schemes in the past, are now nostalgic about those times and would use the first opportunity to restore the past,” concludes “Haykakan Zhamanak.”
Lragir.am says that Pashinian never expected his latest trip to the United States to be “decisive or fateful.” The publication says that the visit was focused on “pan-Armenian” issues. “Official Washington regards the Armenian community as a channel of interstate relations,” it says, adding that Pashinian’s meeting with Armenian American organizations were very important for U.S.-Armenian relations.