“Zhamanak” reports on parliamentary debates on a bill that would allow political appointees to run Armenia’s police and National Security Service (NSS). The paper notes that a deputy chief of the police, Hovannes Kocharian, was sacked on Wednesday one day after publicly objecting to the bill drafted by the opposition Bright Armenia Party (LHK).It says this is a further indication that the law-enforcement system remains “under review.”
“For at least the last two decades Armenia’s entire state governance system has been based on crime and corruption,” claims “Haykakan Zhamanak.” “This certainly does not mean that everyone involved in the system was a criminal. But the system was like that and in order to win promotion any official had to execute illegal orders issued by their boss, turn a blind eye to abuses, rig elections and so on.” The paper controlled by Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian’s family dismisses opposition claims that the arrests of some of those officials are politically motivated repressions organized by the current authorities. It says that such claims are spread by those who had “forced their subordinates to commit those abuses.”
“Aravot” says that Armenian political and public figures engaged in increasingly heated debates over high-profile arrests and prosecutions at home are overlooking important geopolitical developments unfolding in the broader region. The paper singles out Russian President Vladimir Putin’s latest negotiations with his Azerbaijani and Turkish counterparts, Ilham Aliyev and Recep Tayyip Erdogan, as well as Aliyev’s meeting with Erdogan held in Baku earlier this month. It is worried that these developments could have “extremely negative and dangerous” ramifications for Armenia. “Yet nobody seems to care about that,” it says.