The Newly Elected President – A Man Of His Word And Promises

Lilit Poghosyan

Hayots Ashkhar
March 13, 2008

Newly elected president SERGE SARGSYAN yesterday had a meeting with
the students of the State Economic University and answered a number
of questions arousing interest in the public as well as clarified
the information presented to credulous through the "channels" of the
Armenian Pan-National Movement

The students were particularly interested to know whether the events
of March 1 merely resulted from Ter-Petrosyan’s hatred and whether
Ter-Petrosyan was a genius that he managed to surge a wave of protest
within a period 3-4 months or he just managed to take advantage of
the public dissatisfaction accumulated in the course of several years.

"I don’t think we have ever dealt with a genius. What happened on
March 1 essentially differs from the process called elections. It’s
one thing that L. Ter-Petrosan received 350 thousand votes and quite
a different thing that a group of people appeared in the street and
committed unlawful actions. Of course, there are a great umber of
problems and issues in our society and a significant part of our
population is dissatisfied with the existing situation.

And have I ever said that all the problems are solved in our
society? Have I said in the pre-election period that there are
no dissatisfied people in our society and justice always takes its
course? Naturally, some of those people expressed their dissatisfaction
by voting in favor of Ter-Petrosyan," S.

Sargsyan said in response to the question.

But among the populist demonstrators there were also many people who
were dissatisfied not because of injustice but because they were
discharged from posts for working improperly and wanted more than
they have now, "dissatisfied ex-Ministers, ex-Deputy Ministers,
officers removed from the Army and the police. People who will be
dissatisfied even if our living standards are equal to the living
standards of Switzerland."

After all, "just compare the pre-election speeches of the candidates
and see who spoke about solidarity and who said ‘the one who is not
with us is scum.’ Who spoke about patriotism and who said that we
should pay a contribution to Azerbaijan for starting a war? See
who demonstrated a restrained conduct and who called the people
traitors; who said ‘we’ll hold transparent elections’ and who said
‘we’ll spoil everything in any case,’ " the Prime Minister added,
proposing to compare the facts instead of eavesdropping the rumors
and only thereafter draw far-reaching conclusions.

What to do to neutralize the tension observed in the public after the
March 1 events and how to rule out the repetition of the "parade" of
spite? In response to this question, S. Sargsyan made the following
statement, "To achieve that, it is necessary to solve a great number
of problems. But the most important thing is for us to be able to
develop an atmosphere of trust in the law enforcement agencies so as
in terms of their professional skills and attitude towards the people,
the law enforcement agencies will reach at least the level of the
present-day Armenian Army. We are obliged to have a law enforcement
system capable of ensuring the security of the RA citizens."

What is meant here concerns not only those who were directly involved
in the street disorders but also, "perhaps, the citizens who have
nothing to do with all that. We, as a state, are obliged to totally
guarantee the people’s right to ownership. We are obliged to totally
ensure our citizens’ right to life," S. Sargsyan is convinced.

After all, there are protest rallies in any country, but in
order to prevent them from developing into mass violence the law
enforcement agencies are required to be professional and technically
equipped, enjoy trust among the people and the international
community. Unfortunately, the March 1 events did not increase that
trust in the authorities and the elections in general.

There is one way for mitigating such distrust, "to work well." S.

Sargsyan said. He also posed the following counter-question, "Do
you think those events would have happened had I received 54 or 56
percent of votes?" "They would have happened by all means," the hall
responded. "Thanks for thinking so," the Prime Minister said sincerely,
receiving the approval of the auditorium. The post-electoral anxiety,
i.e. the splitting, which is characteristic even to the developed
and welfare countries, certainly gives way to concern. But the
Prime Minister is much more concerned about the spiteful ideas,
consistently and continuously instilled into the public, "This is
what we must be able to mitigate. I have said and repeat again that
I will be the President of all the citizens of Armenia and not only
of those who have voted in my favor. I have said that all those who
are in the neighboring square are our brothers and sisters. I have
said it sincerely because we are a small nation, and we must be able
to be united."

What’s the newly elected President’s attitude towards the
unprecedented event that Armenian people killed one another in the
heart of Yerevan? "Negative, extremely negative. What could be my
attitude towards the fact that an Armenian stabbed an MP with a
knife in Yerevan in broad daylight just because the MP was trying
to protect an Armenian policeman? What could be my attitude towards
the fact that an Armenian man tries to kill an Armenian soldier or
an Armenian policeman? You are aware that more than 200 policemen
received wounds, including 50 people suffering from grave wounds and
40 people suffering from wounds caused by fire-arms. I am unable to
understand how 50 people could have attacked one policeman.

Even if the police had committed a mistake near the Opera, no one
had the right to do anything of the kind.

After all, if the organizers had been a little bit concerned for
the people and the state, they could have appeased their proponents
and only then disputed the lawfulness of the law enforcers’ actions,
resorting to legal methods. "As a newly elected President of Armenia,
I would have unhesitatingly appointed an independent investigation
and if necessary – invited someone from abroad, and we would have
conducted an inquiry to find out who was guilty and who wasn’t. But
there were some people who didn’t need that. What they needed was
the March 1 events," the speaker added, stating once again that the
authorities were also to blame for what had happened because being
perfectly aware of what the generals of the demonstration had on
their minds, they were unable to prevent the blood-shed."

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

Emil Lazarian

“I should like to see any power of the world destroy this race, this small tribe of unimportant people, whose wars have all been fought and lost, whose structures have crumbled, literature is unread, music is unheard, and prayers are no more answered. Go ahead, destroy Armenia . See if you can do it. Send them into the desert without bread or water. Burn their homes and churches. Then see if they will not laugh, sing and pray again. For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, see if they will not create a New Armenia.” - WS