Thursday, September 20 2018 16:07
David Stepanyan

Hovhannes Igityan: Putin will prefer to improve  relations with Pashinyan, rather than drag Kocharyan out of the political dump

Hovhannes Igityan: Putin will prefer to improve  relations with Pashinyan, rather than drag Kocharyan out of the political dump

ArmInfo. In an interview with ArmInfo, international expert, ex-chairman of the parliamentary commission on external relations Hovhannes Igityan comments on the recent domestic political impulses in Armenia. Forecasts the possible impact of these events on the Armenian-Russian relations, talks about the role of Robert Kocharian in Armenian politics. Forecasts the results of the elections of Yerevan Mayor. 


Mr. Igityan, in the situation with the publication of the wiretapping of the conversation between the director of the National Security Service and the head of the Armenian SSS, I am personally interested primarily in its authors. Don't you think that Nikol Pashinyan took the version of the external track too hastily ? 

In  time, Chinese very aptly noticed that peeping at the keyhole is more immoral than what you see in it. Therefore, before we analyze what was said in this conversation, let's try to understand what actually happened. For me, the illegal listening of high-ranking officials and the selective throwing of content that is beneficial to someone is a diversion against my state. This is a crime described in the Criminal Code. Without denying the presumption of innocence, let's leave it to the courts, since moral and political statements do not always imply the presumption of innocence in the sense in which it implies the right. To understand who could commit this crime, one must consider the moral and political qualities and technical capabilities of the alleged criminals. Analyzing the situation with wiretapping, who benefits from it, who has the appropriate opportunities, you definitely go out on one person - Robert Kocharyan. In this sense, there was a wiretapping by external forces or from the inside for me again, since it was Kocharyan who was its final beneficiary. This was clearly done to help him somehow recover in the political field, to discredit the leaders of the revolutionary movement. At the same time, we must understand that analyzing the content of the selective content coming out of someone's interests is a thankless task and no analyst or expert will ever be engaged in it. There was, in principle, a fairly correct conversation between the two men, concerned about the general situation, and not how to put a particular person in jail. I repeatedly heard how our high ranks talk among themselves in the spirit of street hooligans, when they are heard and not heard.


And, nevertheless, do you, in your opinion, think the authors of this wiretapping achieved their goals? 

I do not think that they managed to somehow discredit or downgrade the image of Nikol Pashinyan in our society. I just do not see it from the reaction of society to Facebook, on the streets, in the press. As far as I understand from the record, Vanetsyan and Khachatryan were talking about "some caller Judge Rache." That is, these two high-ranking functionaries of this judge did not even know, they did not know his name, they were not interested and he was not called. And the fact that Judge Rach himself called one of them as a whole speaks only of the inadequacy of our judicial system in general and in a personalized plan. And I do not exclude that Judge Rach could also be one of the actors of the game against the acting authorities. In any case, his call for instructions from those who do not know his functionaries from the authorities can also talk about his engagement. That is why the revolution must lead to the replacement of a personalized judicial system. And all the judges, seen in participation in politicized processes, implementing political orders, especially in the events of 2008, must definitely be replaced by new ones under the pressure of the authorities.

Republicans today demagogue in parliament, they demand the creation of a commission to investigate the circumstances of the conversation between Vanetsyan and Khachatryan. And where were these champions of justice, when, for example, I and my friends were persecuted? When people sat on fictitious matters, which is clearly reflected in the PACE resolutions on Armenia and the acquittal of the ECHR. Therefore, wiretapping is the result of the activity of the counter-revolutionary movement, in my opinion, mistakenly chose Kocharyan as its leader. By the way, all that Kocharyan does in Armenia he does through Russian media, Russian opportunities, from Putin's calls and ending with his connections to AFK Sistema 


The question arises: why does Putin need Kocharyan in general? Is it really believed in Moscow that he has a chance to return to the post of first person? Or, after all, is Kocharyan an additional trump card of Putin in negotiations with Nikol Pashinyan, whose main asset is, so much different from all his predecessors, legitimacy? 

To begin with, Pashinyan is a politician of a new era. Meanwhile, as all politicians of the old era have always conditioned their own weight, power capabilities, the very likelihood of the coming to power of real and even illusory support of Moscow. Moreover, all three Armenian presidents and even many opposition presidential candidates were ill with this. These people have accustomed Putin, other Russian higher and even petty officials and political scientists to the weight of their words for Armenia, the Armenian society. So, Nikol Pashinyan does not need the support of all these people. He needs normal, equitable relations with Russia, based on the mutual principle of non-interference in internal affairs and respect for sovereignty. And he talks about it openly. In a situation where Russia finds it difficult to pursue a policy with 95% of the world, Armenia tries to conduct a balanced policy. And I directly support and consider the direct, open policy of Pashinyan towards Russia. Robert Kocharyan is a man of the old era. And always, and everywhere he came to power when he was brought to her. Starting from the formation of the Krunk committee and ending with Levon Ter-Petrosyan and Vazgen Sargsyan, who imported it to Armenia.

Now Kocharyan once again tries to enter into Armenian politics on Putin's mythical shoulders. And this is in conditions when people who hate him in Armenia are hundreds of times bigger than people who support him, when there is not even political power around him. Mythical, because I do not think that Kocharyan really supports Putin and even his entourage. They simply mistakenly believe that Kocharyan's activity strengthens the pro-Russian mood in Armenia. I suppose that a rather powerful Russian embassy in Armenia, Russian analysts send quite normal reports to Moscow. Therefore, Putin must understand that Kocharyan's activities and the linking of this activity with Russia are not in favor, but to the detriment of the Armenian-Russian relations in general and the influence of Russia in Armenia, in particular. Therefore, logically, Putin will rather prefer to establish relations with a man, the incumbent leader of Armenia, who has the support of the people, than to drag a person out of the political dump. 

As far as I understand, Kocharyan is well aware that he does not get the first place in the early parliamentary elections even if he returns "Prosperous Armenia" under his wing, and supports the Dashnaktsakans and the remnants of Republicans, but he has already announced participation in these elections. What is his maximum program, get into parliament and gain political immunity? 

We all know the role of Robert Kocharyan in the death of people on March 1, 2008. But he knows this much better than we do. Therefore, the probability of his being imprisoned is much higher than any person in Armenia. And he knows that as soon as he is on the floor all silent people from his former surroundings will immediately speak. Because Kocharyan's fault is not only on paper, in the form of order 0038, but in his illegal instructions to the siloviki: the Police, the Prosecutor General's Office, the courts. There was obviously no independent initiative and could not be. Kocharyan knows all this and, accordingly, tries to engage in politics, to demonstrate steps against himself as a political reprisal against the opponent of the current government in the pre-election period. He also tries to assure his own former surroundings of his importance with a view to preventing these people from talking. Well, of course, Kocharyan has huge financial resources, no matter how hard he tries to convince everyone that he lived for one salary. If you judge by selfie with the animals they killed, only this "fun" this person spent at least half a million dollars. It should be borne in mind that the availability of so much money in the same hands, coupled with the purchase of an information field in countries like Armenia, can also have an impact. These people are so used to it, and they think that by shaking millions of dollars it is possible to resolve issues today. At the same time, Kocharyan is not able to claim the prime minister's chair, he is able to correctly assess his weight in the society. Accordingly, it seems to me that its purpose is still the process itself.


Nikol Pashinyan marked the date of the early elections in May 2019. But in society there is clearly a request for holding these elections much earlier. What is preventing the authorities from meeting the popular sentiment today, especially given the growing internal threats?

 The parliamentary majority is still representatives of the past power, and Pashinyan tries to do everything according to the law. Discussion of changes in the IC with political forces, with the Venice Commission, etc. - all this requires a certain amount of time. And the republican leadership of the parliament, as we understand, is in no hurry, and even tries to sabotage all the initiatives of the authorities. Other chances to somehow catch on to some kind of political rope and be saved, for example, participating in future elections, they simply do not. This, if taken subjectively. Objectively, in order to come to new elections it is necessary to decide on the Electoral Code, since the existing law does not fit into the concept of free elections. With the existing judicial power, starting from the Constitutional Court and ending with any court of the first instance, it is impossible to hold elections. There are still electoral commissions, starting from Central, where people still are known for their tendency to falsify elections or legitimize the results of these falsifications. Accordingly, the conduct of normal elections without changes in this situation is impossible. 

Will you try to predict the results of the elections of the Yerevan mayor? 

The main mistake of the election participants and experts is an attempt to assess the upcoming extraordinary elections of the mayor of Yerevan by ordinary situations and methods. Meanwhile - this is not a struggle programs, it is not a rivalry of biographies and experiences. Elections should be viewed through the prism of the revolution, the prism of the change of power that took place. We all know that Yerevan's management system is completely corrupt. And she always worked for some people, carrying out political orders. Accordingly, the forthcoming elections should first of all be considered as an opportunity to break, destroy this vicious system. As a continuation of the April and May events. Therefore, it seems to me that in Yerevan mayoral elections Yerevan citizens will vote for Nikol Pashinyan (candidate of the block "My step" under N1 Hayk Marutyan - Ed.). And this is with all due respect to the other participants in the elections. For example, Artak Zeynalyan in my memory is the only decent Minister of Justice of Armenia. And I would very much like him to continue what he started on this post. I would very much like to have representatives of the most diverse political forces in the Council of Elders of Yerevan. This will only help the mayor to lead the city properly and only add to its presence the constructive management of Yerevan.

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