Kocharian Speaks Out About Presidential Polls
YEREVAN—Armenia’s former president Robert Kocharian spoke out Tuesday after long speculation in various circles about his impending return to politics and vying for the country’s presidency in the upcoming elections, saying that he finds it unacceptable for two longtime allies to squabble for power.
In an interview published on Mediamax.am Kocharian said while he never indicated that he would run for office again, there were circumstances that made him refrain from returning to active politics.
“Fighting for power between two Karabakh natives and longtime allies is unacceptable for me,” said Kocharian referring to his one-time prime minister and political ally President Serzh Sarkisian. “I myself endorsed the incumbent President [in the last election], and his desire to run for the second term is understandable.”
Kocharian said that he found the current political situation, whereby the three presidents of the country would be pitted against one another “extremely unpleasant, and I believe very harmful for the country.”
Armenia second president called the pursuit of political compromise in Armenia “small-time political bargaining.”
Kocharian identified the continued exodus from Armenia one of the fundamental problems plaguing the nation and while acknowledging economic growth he warned that decreasing investments and Armenia’s increasing debt commitments would hinder that growth.
Kocharian also remarked on the political situatuion in Armenia, calling the political race “a puppet show ahead of the elections.” He said this climate does not contribute to effective productivity by the authorities and creates apathy in society.
“It’s well known that without competition the authorities sleep peacefully but the people, as a rule, live poorly,” said Kocharian.
“It’s extremely difficult to reverse these trends by measured steps by the government. They require something more—a mobilizing society which would instill hope and compel people to act. I hope the authorities will meet these challenges,” concluded Kocharian.