Armenia opposition leader says power change imminent

Armenia opposition leader says power change imminent

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31 Mar 04

Correspondent Mr Demirchyan leader of the Anrapetutyun Party and
Justice bloc only yesterday leader of the National Unity Party ,
Artashes Gegamyan refused to agree on the dates set by the Justice
bloc. How did you manage to hammer out an agreement just in one day?

Demirchyan I do not think its right to talk about the process because
the main thing is the result confirmed by a statement issued a few
days ago.

Correspondent According to British pundits, there will be no velvet
revolution here because the opposition cannot still decide on its
leader and is not united. One gets the impression that the problem of
the leader was put on the back burner. Could we say that a change in
power is inevitable?

Demirchyan The public wants the power to change and the constitutional
order to be restored. Both the Justice bloc and the National Unity,
which fully realize their responsibility, have decided to join their
efforts, moreover, this pr ocess has been launched long ago on the day
when parliament issued the statement. The power will be changed as
this is what the public needs. It is not important what various
experts come up with. As to the so-called topic of the leader, this
will be decided by the people: leaders are not born on wish and
artificially. This is decided by the people.

Correspondent That is to say, after the change of power will the
opposition leaders act separately or put forward a single candidate?

Demirchyan Let us wait and see.

Correspondent In his interview with us Defence Minister Serzh
Sarkisyan threatened “to beat the opposition up” and raise the army
“to protect law and order with all the might”. What is your comment?

Demirchyan Under the constitution, the army’s task is to protect the
country’s security but not order. And subsequently, the army cannot
interfere in domestic affairs. Moreover, I believe that neither the
law-enforcement agencies nor the army will ever take up arms against
the people. Finally, I do not differentiate between the power-wielding
bodies and our people. There are individuals who might decide to
resort to such steps, but they should understand that they will be
called to book with all severity.

Correspondent What is your attitude to hasty appointments and

Demirchyan This is how the authorities are preparing for pending
processes. It would be wrong to expect the results simply by making
some personnel changes. The authorities should understand one thing
that one cannot fight against his own people.