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.
Continue reading “Ter-Petrossian Kills Armenian National Congress for A New Beginning”
One of the top stories in the Armenian media today is the fact, that Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK) leader Gagik Tsarukian attended a session of parliament for the first time since last May’s legislative elections. Continue reading “Big Deal! Tsarukian Makes First Appearance In Parliament”
The American bi-monthly international affairs magazine National Interest has published prominent Caucasus expert Sergey Markedonov’s commentary on Armenia’s upcoming presidential elections. Continue reading “Commentary: Armenia’s Looming Elections Look to Be “Symbolic””
The Armenian Parliament stripped MP Vartan Oskanian of his parliamentary immunity clearing way for the investigators to move forward with a probe into money-laundering allegations, RFE/RL reports. Continue reading “Parliament Strips Vartan Oskanian of Immunity”
One of Armenia’s wealthiest businessman and leader of “Bargavach Hayastan” (Prosperous Armenia) party Gagik Tsarukian has backed the initiative of his party’s youth wing to hold the First Eurasian Youth Conference in the Armenian resort town of Tsakhadzor on August 22-27. Continue reading “Tsarukian Signals Commitment to Putin's Eurasian Union Plan”
Looks like Armenia is more or less content with the outcome of the parliamentary elections that took place on May 6.
Continue reading “Armenia Seems Content With Its Elections”
Gyumry mayor Vardan Ghukasian announced on Monday, that his family is ready to contribute all the money necessary to acquire great Armenian poet Hovhannes Tumanian’s house in Tbilisi and hand it over to Armenia’s Writers’ Union to be turned into a literary, cultural center and library, Aravot.am reports. Continue reading “Gyumri Mayor's Surprise Move to Save Tumanian's House”
Yerevan’s Central (Closed) Market, a popular tourist attraction and an officially recognized architectural monument, has closed its doors for renovation since January 1st. Continue reading “Yerevan's "Closed Market" Closes for Renovation”
Armenia’s richest man – Gagik Tsarukyan bets $1 milion, saying sociologist Aharon Adibekyan won’t be able to prove claims, that Tsarukyan’s “Prosperous Armenia” party has a very low rating.
It all started on the air of Shant TV’s “Herankar” talk-show program. The guest in studio, sociologist Aharon Adibekyan, who has many times been accused by various opposition forces and even coalition parties, for manipulating sociological surveys, in response to program host Nver Mnatsakanian’s question made a statement, that the political rating of “Prosperous Armenia” («Բարգավաճ Հայաստան») party is very low.
Next day on the air of the same program Gagik Tsarukyan, the founder and leader of “Prosperous Armenia”, discounted Adibekian’s claims, saying he’ll bet $1 million (later corrected to 1 million Armenian drams), that Adibekian won’t be able to back his claims with data.
E-channel quotes Adibekian saying he’s sorry that “a political figure of that calibre acts on restaurant mentality.”
“Prosperous Armenia” party has in its turn issued a statement, saying “Sociology is generally a serious science, if serious people practice it.” The party revels, that Aharon Adibekyan has been expecting a “tailored” offer from Gagik Tsarukyan, with data manipulated to the tastes of the “Prosperos Armenia” party. The party statement implies, that seeing he is not getting an offer, Adibekian has come out with statements about the low rating of the party.
“Adibekian has now received an offer [Tsarukian’s bet], so instead of pointless talk he ought to either accept it, or apologise in a due manner for dishonoring a serious science like sociology”, the party’s statement concludes.
PS: In a possibly related development Nver Mnatsakanyan, Shant TV’s leading anchor and political journalist, who initiatited the discussion above, was beaten in Yerevan last night.
The 25 Armenian athletes departing for the 2008 Olympic games in Beijing, China, will face the 639-strong Chinese, 596-strong US and 470-strong Russian teams. Given the sheer size of the competing teams and the fact, that our national team brought zero gold medals from the past Olympics in Athens, it’s really hard to believe in the success of our tiny Armenian team.
The Olympic torch will be lit in Beijing on 8th month of year 2008, at 8 seconds, 8 minutes past 8 o’clock of local time – as the figure 8 is considered lucky in China. The motto of the Olympics is – “One world, one dream” and that dream will cost China 44 billion dollars – a record amount to be spent on organization of Olympic games.
The history of independent Armenia has only seen one Olympic champion so far – wrestler Armen Nazaryan won Olympic gold in Atlanta, 1996. Overall Armenia has had 13 Olympic champions and we’ve been the best in wrestling, weightlifting, athletics. Clearly the team sports are not one of our strengths.
The Armenian team this year has 6 weightlifters (Hripsime Khurshudyan, Tigran g. Martirosyan, Gevorg Davtyan, Ara Khachatryan, Tigran V. Martirosyan, Edgar Gevorgyan), 4 boxers (Hovhannes Danielyan, Hrachik Javakhyan, Eduard Hambardzumyan, Andranik Hakobyan), 3 free wrestlers (Martin Berberyan, Suren Markosyan, Harutyun Yenokyan), 6 Greco/Roman wrestlers (Roman Amoyan, Karen Mnatsakanyan, Arman Adikyan, Arsen Julfalakyan, Denis Forov, Yuri Patrikeyev), 2 judoists (Hovhannes Davtyan, Armen Nazaryan), 2 track-and-field athletes (Melik Janyan, Ani Khachikyan), 1 swimmer (Mikayel Koloyan) and 1 shooter (Norayr Bakhtamyan).
On my flight to Moscow on July 31st, I was lucky to be on the same plane with our judo team – the guys were wearing the proud uniform of Armenian Olympics team and were sure of their success. Their coaches, however, were more cautious – the Chineeze team is especially strong they said and they have the mental ability of concentrating for the hour of the match in such a manner, that the results resemble that of using doping means. At any rate, the Armenian team has the high sponsorship of Armenian oligarch, head of Armenian Olympic Committee Gagik Tsarukyan, who has promised money, gifts and honor to Armenian gold winners – along with grave threats to make sure they bring home the Olympic gold. Will this kind of ‘stick and carrot’ policy force the tiny Armenian team bring medals home? We will see soon – shooter Norayr Bakhtamyan, judoist Hovhannes Davtyan (60 kilos) and boxer Andranik Hakobyan (75 kilos) will be first to compete in Beijing on August 9. All we can do now is prey for them and watch the splendid opening ceremony which is due to start soon and will be broadcast on Armenian Public TV. Go Armenians – Stronger, Faster, Higher!!!