We Will Start A New Wave Of Protest


15:25:58 – 10/08/2009

Interview by Arman Galoyan

-The Armenian National Congress headed by the president Levon
Ter-Petrosyan started its regional visits. What would you say in this
connection? What are your aims?

-We have several aims. We started our visits from the regions where
we have political prisoners. We want to stress first of all that that
political repression in the country has not passed yet and we are not
going to tolerate the presence of political prisoners. We are going to
start a new wave of protest for the rest of 21 political prisoners in
jails and those in search, in particular for Khachatur Sukiasyan. We
are going to start this new wave with the help of non-governmental,
diplomatic organizations, the PACE and other key players in Armenia. We
want to underline that the HAK does not consider the steps of the
government sufficient. Then, we want to study the public’s moods; we
want to see if people are determined. They are obvious not to want this
situation in Armenia. And in the end, the Armenian national Congress
wants to enhance its organizational potential and its structures.

-Are you going to visit only those regions from where there are
political prisoners?

-In the first phase, we paid the maximum attention to these
regions. But we are going to continue our visits to other regions too,
where we have no political prisoners.

-With its visits, the Congress seems to leave the impression that it
is getting prepared for extraordinary election.

-We have never hidden our main aim to restore the legitimacy of
the government in Armenia. And we may do this only with the help of
extraordinary elections. Naturally, we are going to do everything
possible to hold extraordinary presidential election as soon as

-What impression do you have from the meetings with the residents of
regions? How are the moods 1, 5 year after the March 1 events?

-There are two directions. The more we moved away from presidential
elections, the more those people who are far from politics, started
to stay quite. But on the other hand, politically active people
crystallized their qualities and rows. We have a stronger group of
supporters, which is more determined than in 2007 at the beginning
of the movement. These are natural processes, and the most important
is that we have created some potential, which may develop in any
convenient political situation.

-But the government affirms the opposite, it says that not only
political passions calmed down, but also that Serge Sargsyan’s rating
is enhancing.

-If the political passions calmed down, I propose the government not
to take up any measure to hinder the September 18 rally. Let them
not close the roads taking to Yerevan, let the Police not take up
repressive measures against our activists and after all let them free
the political prisoners. Naturally, they will never accept my proposal,
which is the best example that this government is able to survive
only with the help of repressions. And such a government has no future.

-The Nagorno-Karabakh issue is much activated this summer. The OSCE
Minsk group co-chairs make regular statements. And the impression is
created that the sides have come to a final agreement on the principles
of Madrid. And now the co-chairs are preparing the societies of both
of the countries for the settlement of the conflict in accordance
with the principles of Madrid. Do you share this impression?

-This shows that we deal with a weak, unconfident government. This
means that we agreed on the plans of settlement but we have no courage
to present the truth to the people. And I would like to stress that
Serge Sargsyan for the fist time in the history of the independent
Armenia, adopted a diplomacy, when documents are signed but are not
published. The best example is the document, the roadmap signed on
April 22, which has never been published.

-The OSCE Minsk group American co-chair Mathew Bryza stated in Yerevan
that Armenia’s positions were stronger 10 years ago than today. What
would you say in this connection? What this statement means?

-Unfortunately, this is the truth. This is the biggest crime that
this government committed. First, Armenia had strong positions and
now Azerbaijan. And now, even the co-chairs voice this opinion. They
voice the fact, that Robert Kocharyan pushed out Nagorno-Karabakh
from the negotiating process, which the opposition has voiced many
times. And now the international society voices how Robert Kocharyan
weakened Armenia’s positions in the negotiating process.