Parliamentary Factions Assess President’s 1st Year in Office

Parliamentary Factions Assess President Sargsyan’s 1st Year in Office
2009/04/10 | 13:54

Shushan Stepanyan

At a National Assembly press briefing, several deputies gave their
evaluations of President Serzh Sargsyan’s first year in office.

Heritage Party Deputy Larisa Alaverdyan summed up her thoughts in one
sentence – `The only achievement is that the events of March 1, 2008,
haven’t been repeated.’

ARF Deputy Vahan Hovhannisyan stated that there `weren’t reasons to
applaud’ and added that mush more could have been accomplished. In his
view the most important success of the government was that internal
stability had been restored in Armenia.

Mr. Hovhannisyan noted that the current difficulties facing the
country could be divided into two parts. The first being the financial
crisis and the second is the heightened pressure being exerted by
Azerbaijan and Turkey. `All this creates objective difficulties for
us, but there are subjective hurdles as well that can be tied to the
perception of democracy. Various political forces have different
perceptions of this concept. It is only natural that such
disagreements also exist within the ruling coalition,’ he noted.

Prosperous Armenia Party Deputy Naira Zohrabyan stated that it would
be conducive to evaluate the activities of the president from an
internal and external policy perspective. `In the foreign affairs
sector it was a pro-active policy that was acceptable to us. The
correct emphasis was placed when it came to the Karabakh conflict and
to Turkey. Dynamic movement was visible.’

As regards internal policy matters, Ms. Zohrabyan noted that, `The
course of the second round of reforms that was certified by the
presidential elections naturally slowed as a result of the March 1st
events. But today there is the clear political will to overcome the
March 1st syndrome. I am convinced that the president’s call for
dialogue with all forces is in force.’

Galust Sahakyan, who heads the Republican Party faction in the
parliament, noted that much had been said regarding the achievements
but added that, `We are doubly determined than ever, than one year
ago, in all matters. Our successes are plainly evident.’

Mr. Sahakyan confessed that omissions existed. `We could have done
more. Those evaluations being heard today regarding the work of the
president’s first year in office, I believe, are not always clearly
defined by our side. We haven’t learned the role of populism in
politics,’ he concluded.

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