September 29 2014

Since, according to NKR former Foreign Minister Arman Melikyan, Serzh
Sargsyan sent the Armenian-Turkish protocols to hell not on his but on
behalf of many citizens of Armenia. - How will you estimate President
of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan's speech in the UN? Is there a certain view
that Serzh Sargsyan's words addressed to the outer world during his
tenure was quite tough, at the same time, balanced and with correct
accents? Do you agree? - A strange qualification: a word can be tough,
soft or balanced. It cannot be both tough and balanced. It's another
question of to how justified this toughness is and adequate to the
current situation. In my opinion, it is equivalent as it certifies the
failure of sweeping efforts addressed at least to the improvement of
Armenian-Turkish relations. By and large, this was a confession of
short-sightedness of the process started in 2008 and notorious and
demagogic Armenian-Turkish protocols made from the UN podium. As
usual, Mr. Sargsyan, in the context of Azerbaijan and Karabakh
conflict, talked about everything except for the Azeri-Armenian
refugees problems, following the harmful tradition established by
his predecessors. Without raising this issue, talking about other key
elements of the conflict is useless and fruitless waste of time. In
the context of conflict settlement, this is the only issue, the
substantial and comprehensive discussion of which can eventually lead
to real solutions. - Why isn't Serzh Sargsyan able or seeks to keep
the balance in the domestic political life, too? - This is a matter
of work style, which, perhaps, is also correlated with certain world
outlook peculiarities. I wish that he and all of his successors adopt
the conduct of talking to subordinates and ordinary citizens with
"You" as an important step to ensure the balance. Psychologically,
it is a problem when the person occupying a leading position, while
contacting with his subordinates or ordinary citizens, addresses them
with "you," clearly realizing that they cannot address him with "you".

He must realize that all sectors of the government system follow
the pattern used by him. I assure you that this, may be not seemed
significant at first glance, detail can form a totally new environment
- the government is obligated to stay on its proper height. -
Speaking from the UN podium about the Armenian-Turkish protocols,
Serzh Sargsyan directly sent them "to hell", saying, "Those Protocols
have been shelved for years now awaiting ratification in the Turkish
Parliament. Ankara declares publicly that it will ratify those
Protocols only if Armenians cede Nagorno-Karabakh, the free Artsakh,
to Azerbaijan. In Armenia and Artsakh, ordinary people often just
retort to such preconditions: "To hell with your ratification." This
vernacular phrase concentrates the age-old struggle of the entire
nation, and it unequivocally explains to those who attempt to
bargain the others' homeland that the motherland is sacrosanct,
and they had better stay away from us with their bargain. It is in
these circumstances that currently the official Yerevan is seriously
considering the issue of recalling the Armenian-Turkish Protocols
from the parliament." While once, he was the number one advocate of
protocols. Was the speech also a preparation ground for recalling the
protocols from the Parliament of Armenia? - He sent them to hell not on
his but on behalf of many citizens of Armenia, so, personally for him,
the bridges are not burned. The protocols, initially, were stillborn,
and the sides initialed them based on purely tactical reasons. The
Armenian-Turkish hostility is a convenient political tool in the hands
of strangers, in the context of providing geopolitical interests in
our region. If we also add that groupings that take immediate benefits
from propaganda of this hostility are formed in Turkish and Armenian
environments over the decades, it will become clear that the true
solution settlement of relationships, today, has a more effective
opponent than a supporter. - Ahead to the centennial of the Genocide,
on the background of the official invitation to the Turkish President
to visit Armenia, what role and significance will the recalling of
the protocols have, and what future developments will be? Will Turkey
go to more drastic actions against Armenia, especially that once,
Erdogan himself hinted on 70 thousand Armenians living and working
illegally in Turkey? - The Armenian-Turkish relations, in the near
future, will most likely gain special importance, especially in
the context of growing systemic crisis of Russia-West relations. It
is not excluded that Mr. Sargsyan's such drastic behavior is also
due to this fact, obviously he has addressed his words to the newly
elected president of Turkey and the newly appointed prime minister
of Turkey, who apparently will govern their country in the next few
years. I think that it is possible to calculate whom it is necessary
to aggravate the Armenian-Turkish relations. - Can Serzh Sargsyan's
arguments with regard to NKR issue in the UN Security Council and
failure to implement the Resolutions of the UN Security Council by
Azerbaijan receive a practical respond, or they were just necessary
documentations? - The four UN Resolutions were adopted in already begun
war conditions and predominantly refer to the matter of immediate
cease of military actions. The Republic of Armenia is not actually
introduced in them as a warring party. After father Aliyev's becoming
the President of Azerbaijan, Armenia under Russia's pressure had to
recognize itself as a party in conflict, and with this status, sign
the ceasefire agreement. If we want withdraw from this vicious circle,
then we need to come up with new arguments and substantiations. -
Yesterday, the draft document for Armenia's accession to EaEU was
published. What risks does it contain, in your opinion? - We are
going to be integrated into a common economic space, against which
economic sanctions are already applied, which cannot but influence on
our economy. Whether we will benefits, or lose, time will tell. First,
the agreement should be signed, and then gradually the norms prescribed
by it will begin to apply. As far as I understand, certain temporary
benefits and advantages are defined for Armenia. But let's not go
ahead to the events, as the geopolitical changes in the neighboring
regions are taking place so fast that in a few months we can appear
in an entirely new geopolitical situation. - Will the agreement for
Armenia's accession to the EaEU be signed on October 10, as it is
planned, or there are still hopes that one of the parties will prevent
it? - This is a matter of political tactics. The important matter is
that the current authorities of Armenia have announced about their
strategic decision to affiliate to the Union, and as to which moment
this declaration will be endorsed by signing underneath the document,
I do not consider it so essential.

Interviewed by Nelly GRIGORYAN

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From: A. Papazian