WikiLeaks: Levon Ter-Petrosyan Offered A Deal To Serzh Sargsyan Yet


Tuesday, December 20, 16:14

Wikileaks has published another secret dispatch of US Embassy in
Armenia Charge d’Affaires Joseph Pennington dated Sept 8 2008 saying
that the oppositional Armenian National congress offered a deal to
President Serzh Sargsyan to prevent possible activation of the second
president of Armenia Robert Kocharyan, specifically, his appointment to
the post of the prime minister. The document says that ANC leader was
going to make such offer via the US Embassy and the keynote mediator
in those “talks” with Americans was chosen David Shakhnazaryan.

The document says that Shakhnazaryan met with the US Embassy in
Armenia Charge d’Affaires with a request to inform the Armenian
authorities of Levon Ter-Petrosyan’s offer. Shakhnazaryan expressed
concern over the efforts of Robert Kocharyan’s supporters behind the
scenes to make Serzh Sargsyan appoint Kocharyan to the post of the
prime minister instead of Tigran Sargsyan. ANC representative said
that Ter-Petrosyan and his supporters are still unhappy with the
authorities, but Kocharyan’s return will become a national disaster.

Given the “common interests” of Sargsyan and Ter-petrosyan, David
Shakhnazaryan on behalf of the Congress expressed readiness to refuse
street rallies and other provocative actions, if President Sargsyan
sets free 75 opposition activists, who were arrested over March 1
incidents, within the coming weeks. Shakhnazaryan said that Levon
Ter-Petrosyan will praise such a step and will not call it a political
victory over the authorities. The dispatch says that J. Pennington,
for his part, discussed Shakhnazaryan’s suggestion on Sept 17 2008,
during his meeting with Mikael Minasyan, Deputy Head of the President’s
Administration and the president’s son-in-law. Minasyan agreed to
inform President Sargsyan of the given suggestion but warned that
the president will hardly let himself be tempted given his distrust
in Shakhnazaryan. Minasyan told the US diplomat that in spite of the
falling public support to Ter-Petrosyan, the opposition is still a
“headache” for the authorities. In addition, Minasyan neither rejected
nor directly spoke of Kocharyan’s return. He assured Pennington that
the president will take all the necessary measures within the coming
1-2 months to set free the above number of prisoners.

The ANC started organizing rallies in Yerevan on Feb 20 2008 protesting
against the presidential election of 2008. ANC accuses ex-president
Kocharyan of firing at peaceful demonstrators on March 1.

Post- election unrest and clashes with police on March 1 2008 resulted
in 10 deaths and over 200 wounded. Those responsible for the tragedy
have not been revealed yet. Dozens of people were arrested after March
1 charged with organization of mass disorders. Later, President Serzh
Sargsyan set free the oppositionists.

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