100 Days Of Prsesidency

Lilit Poghosyan

Hayots Ashkhar Daily
Published on July 18, 2008

The 19th of July is the 100th day of President Serge Sargsyan’s tenure,
and even though this period of time is very short for speaking about
the implementation of the programs envisaged for the upcoming 5 years,
let’s try to give a summary of the accomplishments and the political
steps that were undertaken prior to the realization of the President’s
pre-electoral promises.

In his inauguration speech, Serge Sargsyan reiterated all the
commitments he had voiced during the post-electoral rally held
on the Republican Square, lending a hand to his political rivals,
proposing them a dialogue and cooperation for joining their efforts to
overcome the internal and external challenges faced by the country and
demonstrate consistency in solving the pan-national and state problems.

After assuming the duties of President, Serge Sargsyan (true to the
commitment to consolidate the capable forces of society) undertook
consistent steps towards the implementation of the principles and
top priorities enshrined in the Memorandum of Coalition, dated March
4. The Memorandum was signed with "Rule of Law" and Dashnaktsutyun
parties which had responded to the cooperation proposal advanced by
the Republican and "Prosperous Armenia".

In particular, the President issued a decree on setting up a
working group20with the purpose of restoring the atmosphere of public
solidarity which had been undermined as a result of the post-electoral

The mission of the committee was to specify the activities envisaged by
PACE Resolution # 1609 and display consistency in their implementation.

Let’s note that these were not steps imposed by foreign structures,

the Council of Europe in this particular case. These were steps
deriving from the "letter and spirit" of the Memorandum of Coalition.

Moreover, the CoE Resolution mainly seconded the commitments undertaken
by the coalition partners at their own will.

In the context of the activities elaborated by the working group,
an interim parliamentary committee was set up with the purpose of
conducting a thorough investigation of the March 1-2 events and
submitting proposals that would rule out the repetition of the tragedy.

On June 13, Serge Sargsyan signed a decree on setting up a Public
Chamber under the President. Under another decree, a committee
coordinating the preparatory work of this body was established. The
mission of the committee is to submit to the President its approaches
towards the staff and the regulations within a period of 3 months.

Even if the "radical" representatives of the extra-parliamentary
opposition persist in avoiding a dialogue, refusing to participate in
the activities of the NA interim committee and the Public Chamber,
such 0Ainitiatives will serve as grounds for uniting the potentials
of the influential public and political organizations and individuals
and contributing to the solution of the problems which are of vital
importance for society.

In the sphere of foreign policy, the 100-day period was marked by the
Sargsyan-Aliev meeting held in St. Petersburg. After the presidential
elections this was the first attempt of the Armenian-Azerbaijani
dialogue on the level of Presidents. During the meeting, the parties
agreed to continue the Karabakh settlement talks within the frameworks
of the Madrid proposals, i.e. following the format of the Minsk Group.

On June 23, Serge Sargsyan paid his first official visit abroad,
beginning the agenda of the high-level interstate meetings with
Russia, our strategic ally. Within the frameworks of his three-day
visit, the RA President met with the newly elected Russian President
Dmitry Medvedev, newly-appointed Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and
other senior officials. As a result, the parties reiterated their
determination in developing and strengthening the bilateral relations
in different directions, replenishing them with political and economic

The President’s visit to Russia was also marked with the bald
accentuations on improving the Armenian-Turkish relations. "Our
attitude is clear: neighboring states should not have closed borders
in the 21st century. Regional cooperation may be the only tool
for esta blishing stability. The Turkish side offers us to set up a
committee studying the historical facts. We are not against the idea,
but this will happen only in case the border between our states is
opened. Otherwise, it may become a tool for postponing and speculating
the discussion of the issue for many years.

The President’s statement gave way to inappropriate speculations;
however, the further clarifications made it clear that the fact of
the Genocide is not subject to speculations, and the Armenian side’s
attitude towards achieving the recognition of the first mass atrocity
against humanity remains unchanged.

Notwithstanding this, the President decided to make the first step
towards promoting the Armenian-Turkish relations and invited Turkish
President Abdullah Gyul to Armenia "for watching the football match
between the representative teams of Armenia and Turkey together." This
aroused strong interests and responses in the international diplomatic

Regardless whether the Turkish President will accept the invitation
or turn it down, yielding to the blackmail tactics of Azerbaijan,
the ball is in the enemy’s playground. And it rests with us to arm
ourselves with patience and wait for the outcomes of the President’s
100-day activity.