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Following the release of a statement on July 10, 2009, in Aquila, by presidents of OSCE Minsk Group co-chairing countries, containing the so-called Madrid basic principles of Karabakh problem’s resolution a group of several dozen Armenian bloggers have launched a campaign demanding the resignation of Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian.
“We believe these principles are pernicious to the Republic of Armenia, Artsakh and the Armenian people,” the statement runs, as published by RealArmenia blog. The blog claims over 150 Armenian bloggers have signed the statement and goes on to demand from the President of Armenia Serzh Sarkisian:
– Immediate dismissal of RA foreign minister Edward Nalbandyan
– Cessation of participation in negotiations that are destructive for the Republic of Armenia and Artsakh
– Forbearance from signing evidently anti-Armenian documents
– Acting henceforth only for the interests of the Armenian statehood and with valor typical to the Armenian people.
Pigh, one of the highest rated nationalist blogs on the Armenian section of LiveJournal steps in posting a list of 47 Armenian blogs who have supported the action. Over a 100 bloggers have also joined the statement in the comment section of Pigh’s blog, thus making the number of bloggers joining the action over 150.
The blogosphere is not uniform in the demand , however. Unzipped formulates most of the criticism in a lengthy post:
Do they [Armenian bloggers] actually think that it’s a Minister of Foreign Affairs who formulate and lead Armenian foreign policy? Of course, they do not. No need to re-state that Armenian foreign policy is being directed by a president. FM Nalbandyan is simply an employee who is conducting work based on instructions and approvals by his boss. It’s just plain easy and does not require courage to target consequences but not the roots. It’s much more convenient to find a scapegoat and fight him.
Commenting on Unzipped’s post, veteran blogger Onnik Krikorian makes an important point:
Not going to discuss the terms of any deal, but the statement is a nationalist one and also, does it really represent the view of “Armenian bloggers?” These guys have just gotten a little carried away with their self-importance since disrupting events staged at Yerevan schools and on International Women’s Day. Anyway, one name signed up is, of course, Pigh. His right, of course, although who in the blogosphere was asked about the wording of this statement is suspect. Pigh says 150 bloggers have signed btw, but no names are listed.
Narjan[AM] goes on to explain:
“I’m sure that most of the people criticizing Nalbandian do it on purpose – to divert public frustration from the real guilty. At any rate, I’m sure, that such actions do a lot of damage, and I urge everyone, who cares for the future of this country to abstain from cursing Nalbandian. There is only one person responsible. Nalbandian is a middle-range operative, who is just slightly different from a driver or head of stables.
Meanwhile,the RadioVan blog, while agreeing that it’s pointless to blame Nalbandian, also suggests to directly go to President Serzh Sarkisian and tell him: “Why don’t you reveal what a hell are you doing for 20 years not with your negotiations.” The blog speculates, that could be a more effective strategy to change something in Armenia’s stance on Karabakh resolution.
Gago from Berlin, on the other hand, says the action is pointless, putting the blame on President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliev, Presidents of OSCE Minsk Group co-chair countries: Medvedev, Obama and Sarkozi.