ArmInfo. The honorary representative of the Sasna Tsrer Party, the hero of Artsakh war, Zhirayr Sefilyan, in an interview with ArmInfo, comments on the recent internal political processes in Armenia. He shares his own vision of the future of the country and the Armenians, represents the position of his party on the issues of domestic and foreign policy of Armenia.
Do you see internal and external threats to the results of the change of power that took place in Armenia in May in the period preceding the December elections regarding relative powerlessness?
No, I don't . All these challenges and threats come from the past, they have not changed today. However, unlike the previous time period, the awakening of the people, thanks to which the May change of power became possible, significantly increased the possibilities of confronting all these challenges. To my great regret, the current government is not yet able to effectively use the potential formed by the people. Meanwhile, it is precisely this potential that is the best help in neutralizing threats and overcoming challenges.
Armenian society, in general, quite ambiguously perceived a number of personnel appointments in the Government of Nikol Pashinyan, the top of which was the appointment of Hunan Poghosyan as governor of Syunik region. It is clear that thus Pashinyan beats his own rating, especially on the eve of the elections. What is the logic, and what can such a personnel policy lead to, in your opinion?
Such a staff policy is really very harmful and dangerous. We called on Mr. Nikol Pashinyan not only to review his personnel policy, but also to issue appropriate instructions to verify the previous activities of people like Valery Osipyan and Unan Poghosyan in the context of crimes committed against the people. Such personnel policy is harmful and dangerous because of its ability to break the people's enthusiasm and faith and, as a result, sharply lower the Pashinyan rating. Meanwhile, the prospect of the implementation of such a scenario is of great concern to us, given that all this together will significantly increase the challenges that exist and arise before the national interests and statehood of Armenia. All this contributes to a situation that is very beneficial to our opponents and very dangerous for all of us.
At the founding congress of Sasna Tsrer, the coordinator of the party’s secretariat, Varuzhan Avetisyan, announced the intention to support the acting president. Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan at least until the formation of the new parliament and the classic, politically competitive situation. How does your party present a classic, politically competitive situation? Don't you think that it takes years, if not decades, to form it in Armenia?
There are two factors. The revolution as a process to its logical conclusion, and elections. We will continue to promote the revolution and strive in every way to support its rear. In the parliamentary elections, we will present our program to the public and try to convince the electorate to choose us. Of course, it takes time to create a classic, politically competitive situation. And Varuzhan Avetisyan meant exactly the moment of the start in the direction of creating this situation.
Against the backdrop of political suicide as a result of the October 2 actions of the RPA, ARF Dashnaktsutyun and mainly Prosperous Armenia, many politicians and experts see the Civil Contract, Yelk and your party in the future parliament. In what place and in what role do you see Sasna Dzher following the extraordinary elections?
Considering the wide support among the people, which is, in essence, our basis, I assess our chances at the elections as rather heavy. In the absence of force majeure situations and, accordingly, no need to speak in consolidated formats, we present Sasna Tsrer as a political force that will shape the future parliament and not just an alternative pole.
At the same congress, your party voiced the need to revise all the underlying Armenian-Russian relations, international treaties, Armenia’s withdrawal from all created by Moscow, integration associations, the withdrawal of the 102nd RMB. What is the reason for such a position, is it capable of bringing dividends to Armenia, and did the party consider the possible answer of Russia?
This position is based on our national strategic interests. Until Armenia overcomes the Russian-Turkish regional architecture, not freeing itself from Russian colonization, creating a national state with minimal territory and communication capabilities, our future will remain in jeopardy. We are convinced that Russia will sooner or later begin to reckon with the interests of Armenia and the Armenians. She will also agree to establish relations with Armenia in the format of equal and mutually beneficial cooperation.
How do you personally imagine the future of Armenia’s relations with the United States and the European Union? What role and international functions is today capable of offering Armenia to the West for establishing full-fledged cooperation?
By establishing tandem, allied relations with Georgia, Armenia is able and must become a mediator country, a bridge between the United States and the European Union on one hand, and first of all Iran and other countries of the Greater Middle East with on another. The countries with which Armenia has traditional ties and with which we will be able to develop relations both in the field of security and in the economy, communications, financial and banking, scientific, technical and other fields of bilateral interest.
Quite a lot people, both in Armenia and outside of Armenia, consider “Sasna Tsrer” radicals, setting themselves obviously unrealizable goals, for example, the creation of the Kur-Araks Republic. Don't you think that a slight decrease in the degree of rhetoric will lead to a significant increase in the followers of your party? Let's face it, many will simply stop fearing you when they see in Sasna Tsrer a pragmatic, nationally oriented and democratic force, striving to build a new statehood exclusively in the present territory of Armenia and Artsakh.
The Pan-Armenian Sasna Tsrer Party is a pragmatic, national and democratic force. The Kur-Arax Republic is exactly the state unit that is able to provide minimal territorial and communication opportunities for creating a national subjectivity and national factor. With the unification of the official territory of today's Armenia and Artsakh, the New Republic should not be limited to existing ones. The goal should be to involve in the Armenian state at least Nakhijevan, other territories of the artificial state of Azerbaijan to the right bank of the Kura. With the creation on the official territory of today's Armenia and Artsakh of the New Republic, the process of the collapse of the Russian-Turkish regional architecture will begin, which will be accompanied by the formation of the regional architecture consistent with the interests of Armenia. Staying within the existing territories, we will have to allocate for elementary survival much more of the resources we need so much for development. In other words, the attitude to the project of the Kur-Arax Republic proceeds from a very, very pragmatic issue. Whether we want or do not want to find our place, a free, dignified life under the sun, to have a future, a real hope for the re-acquisition of our entire homeland and the return of home Armenians.
As a pragmatic, national force in response to this question, we answer yes - we want and we are ready to do everything to translate these plans into reality. As for our compatriots who perceive this issue in the context of fears, we are convinced of the temporary nature of this phenomenon. Life itself and our ideological work will dispel all doubts and fears and very soon the Armenians will gain a single, positive point of view on this matter. We are the strength of the future and, given the current political priorities, we prefer to work on shaping our future rating.