Press Comments on Siradeghian “Departure”

YEREVAN (RFE/RL)–Kim Balayan–a senior member of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation commented to Hayots Ashkhar newspaper that that jail is a "safer place" for Vano Siradeghian than being outside Armenia. "He could be easily destroyed abroad."

"One should not be a prophet to forecast that Siradeghian’s so-called illness will last forever," wrote Iravunk–adding that his flight would have been impossible without a permission from the authorities even though technically Siradeghian is still free to travel–it bemoans.

"The authorities have got rid of a big headache. That is–Siradeghian’s testimony in the court." His possible "exposures" would hurt many of the current government officials.

Yerkir wrote that "Siradeghian and Siradeghians at large–must appear before the court because the path of a democratic and rule-of-law Armenia runs through that court hall."

"Vano Siradeghian is neither Lenin nor Ayatollah Khomeini," noted Aravot. Most Armenia’s believe that he is responsible for their extremely difficult life.

"So Siradeghian’s triumphant return after many years in exile is hardly possible…If he decided to be a political migr the move was wrongly calculated. Leaving Armenia–Siradeghian made it much more difficult for his supporters to defend him and conversely–strengthened the positions of his opponents." Pure "human logic" will now work: "He fled–so he must be guilty."

Golos Armenii criticized Prosecutor-General Aghvan Hovsepian for not taking preemptive measures against Siradeghian’s departure. The paper said the law allows the law-enforcement bodies to detain or restrict deputies in their movemen’s even if their immunity is not lifted.

In an interview with Golos Armenii–Interior and National Security Minister Serge Sarkisian says his men did spot Siradeghian at the airport but they were not in a position to stop him.

"I hope he will return," he said.

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