Hairikyan Keeps The Door Ajar For Karapetyan And Manukyan


Lragir, Armenia
Aug 2 2007

On August 2 the leader of the National Self-Determination Union Party
Paruir Hairikyan revealed at the Friday Club details of the recent
meeting of the leaders of the opposition in a cafe he had organized.

"This meeting was successful, it produced the first fruit: the
politicians listened to each other and shared their standpoints. It
will have a development. I do not mean that 7 will become 20, or 15
or 8. It will become 20, or 15 or 8 at some point. I dream of the
moment when 5-6 parties with a practical mindset will draft a program,
make up a team, and appear to the public," Paruir Hairikyan says.

The leaders of 7 political forces participated in the first meeting;
the leader of the Democratic Party participated at a distance,
through Paruir Hairikyan, because he was not in Armenia. Arthur
Baghdasaryan, Artashes Geghamyan, Stepan Demirchyan, Ararat Zurabyan,
Paruir Hairikyan and as an exception Heritage party was represented
by Vardan Khachatryan instead of its leader Raffi Hovannisian. As
an exception because Paruir Hairikyan says the only the leaders take
part in the meetings. They allowed for an exception for the Heritage
Party because Raffi Hovannisian was busy with electoral district 15
from where he is running for parliament. Aram Zaven Sargsyan endorsed
the meeting through Stepan Demirchyan who did not participate in the
meeting but approved it.

"The meeting was held to share ideas, and this sharing of ideas must
eventually lead to a common idea, but the meeting did not expect
a greater result. Our next meetings will be more tangible, and the
participants will be able to find points in common," Paruir Hairikyan
says. He says he organized this meeting to help the politicians find
common ideas and to come together. "And I did not plan these meetings
as meetings of the anti-government wing," Paruir Hairikyan says.

The next meeting will be held in the second half of August. Paruir
Hairikyan says the list of the participants will obviously be longer.

Particularly, the Impeachment Alliance, the Social Democratic
Henchak Party wish to participate in the meeting. "The conditions are
the following: the participants must be ready to listen to others’
viewpoints, both listen to others’ and share theirs. In other words,
those who do not say they rule out something. Because when one rules
out something, his participation in the meeting is also ruled out.

And the participation of the leaders is necessary to talk to the
point," Paruir Hairikyan says.

He said the door is not closed for Aram Karapetyan and Vazgen Manukyan
who had not been invited to the first meeting. Hairikyan says the
reason is that these figures had stated earlier it is pointless
to consider common candidates other than them. Hairikyan says if
these figures change their attitude, they may participate in these
meetings. "They said they do not believe in anyone other than them. Now
Stepan Demirchyan has told me Vazgen Manukyan is less tough. I endorse
this, I will gladly listen to his opinion, and I will share mine with
him. I do not lock the door," Paruir Hairikyan says.

He declined to specify the degree of probability that the meeting
will transform into a common format, but he says there are parties
among the participants which may anticipate 60 percent if they come
together. The leader of the NSDU says the idea of the common candidate
must be sustained by a common program and a common team, and the
candidate must be the representative. The core of the program must
be building the most democratic state in Armenia because democracy
is stronger than oil, gas, molybdenum, anything else.