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Politics just became interesting again in Armenia: Former President Levon Ter-Petrossian effectively called an end to the five-year struggle by his opposition bloc Armenian National Congress (HAK), which was created in the aftermath of disputed presidential elections in 2008.
Ter-Petrossian, the cold-blooded historian and one of the greatest politicians Armenia has ever had, was being highly pragmatic in his interview with the pro-opposition daily “Chorrord Inknishkhanutyun” when he registered a change of political realities and a need to dismantle the alliance, which has already been falling apart with several political parties and activists breaking away from HAK, which was initially created as a bloc of 18 political parties.
Deep divisions have been evident in HAK for over a year as Ter-Petrossian announced a need for dialogue with the authorities last summer followed by a shift to cooperation with megarich businessman Gagik Tsarukian’s Prosperous Armenia party and ARF-Dashnaktsutyun.
Ter-Petrossian went one step further and announced the creation of a Liberal – Socialist party. The opposition leader did imply, that this might lead to further splits from HAK. He said that the opposition bloc had served its purpuse “brilliantly”, but it cannot continue to exist with its current structure and composition “as a wide alliance of various political forces and non-partisan activists.”
“Serious institutional change is needed to pursue our struggle successfully to its victorious end,” Ter-Petrossian added, which he defined by using familiar HAK language and teminology as “dismantling the kleptocracy and restoring constitutional order.”
“I will save no effort to turn the party into one of the most influential political forces in our country,” added Ter-Petrosian. “And if I am entrusted with leading, even with a symbolic status, the newly created party I will consider that a great honor and will perform my duties with utmost responsibility.”
PS: Incumbent President Serzh Sarkissian has reacted angrily to Ter-Petrossian’s interview. Sarkissian has dedicated a full 1-hour speech to the former president, criticizing his former boss and saying Ter-Petrossian is no longer loved by the people, nor he is influential in politics and should just leave. I wonder, why waste so much effort on Ter-Petrossian if Sarkissian really thinks the former president is no longer influential? Just a thought…