Armenian Opp leader partially approves president’s Strasbourg speech

Armenian opposition leader partially approves president’s Strasbourg speech

Public Television of Armenia, Yerevan
3 Jul 04

[Presenter] The Armenian president’s [Robert Kocharyan’s] assessments
of Nagornyy Karabakh’s relations with Turkey and of regional
cooperation in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe
[PACE] were correct enough, Shavarsh Kocharyan, from the opposition
Justice bloc and the leader of the National Democratic Party, said
after the event.

[Shavarsh Kocharyan, captioned] The positions on the Karabakh issue,
which were expressed for the first time at PACE, should have been
voiced earlier. He should, first, have talked about Nagornyy
Karabakh’s structure since it has not been a part of independent
Azerbaijan. This regards not only the period after the collapse of the
Soviet Union till now, but also regards the period of the first
republic [1918]. He did not speak about this, which was the most

Second, here the problem is not a problem of territorial integrity
between two countries [Armenia and Azerbaijan], but a problem of
self-determination. Consequently Karabakh must be a party in the
negotiations [to settle the conflict].

[Presenter] Then it turned out that Shavarsh Kocharyan’s absence from
the session hall during Robert Kocharyan’s speech at PACE was the
result of the opposition activist’s honour. The member of the Justice
bloc said that he was obliged to be out of the hall, otherwise he
would have also had to applaud the president, which parliamentary
etiquette demands.

[Shavarsh Kocharyan] I could not have applauded and this would have
been incorrect.