Trend commentator: Great Armenian scam continues

Trend commentator: Great Armenian scam continues

Trend European Desk commentator Elmira Tariverdiyeva

Armenia hosted the first meeting with the opposition this week. The parties tried to start a dialogue repeatedly voiced by President Sargsyan.

However, the negotiations brought no concrete results.

Frankly speaking, the authorities and the opposition Armenian National Congress could not admit defeat by concluding a truce.

The opposition have already declared their readiness to meet again with a working group of representatives of the coalition forces, the Armenian National Congress said.

The authorities will likely to express full readiness to continue the pointless meetings.

They are meaningless because both sides, diametrically opposed, understand that it is difficult to agree on a common approach to problems in the country.

The decision on early elections will be advantageous for the opposition. The authorities can not even dream about this. So, one can talk about a constructive dialogue between the Armenian National Congress and Sargsyan.

But why the warring parties pretend to work in full swing and call for to continue working in the near future.

In fact, the ceasefire regime taken by the parties is profitable for the opposition and the authorities.

However, this does not mean that ostentatious calm in the political life of Armenia will last for a long time. The time-out will be over soon, by transforming in an even tougher battle between the opposition and the authorities by the fall. Opposition will continue organizing protests and show by detaining opposition members to win the support of the people.

In the meantime, both sides concluded almost a gentleman's agreement. They gather their thoughts and strength for another push. Moreover, neither the current negotiating process, nor the future confrontation will affect resolving any socio-economic problems in the country.
As for the Armenian National Congress, it must first rouse the electorate's interest and achieve national recognition as a key fighter against the regime. At present, it is more convenient for the opposition to pretend that there is a dialogue. Of course, Armenian National Congress will leave it in fall as the preparation for parliamentary elections will leave no chance to negotiate with the hated regime. Armenian National Congress will not leave the dialogue with the authority peacefully, but playing in outraged dignity for the already wound electorate to throw its anger on the streets of Yerevan in the most active form.
However, the Armenian authorities must create visibility of the democratic process to work with opposition forces even knowing the whole background of opposition. The authorities simply lack the resources to restrain activity of the opposition members all the summer, who have all the opportunities to arrange the hot season of street protests in Yerevan.

Moreover, this openness toward the opposition forms a positive image of the authorities to the Western world, tarnished by the the events in March 2008 and consolidated the status of anti-democratic country in the coming years. The fact that the authorities and the opposition can talk about everything behind the closed doors will change nothing, except for temporary reduction of protests.

But even after September, the opposition is unlikely to have grounds for meaningful actions to overthrow the government. One can always negotiate. It is safer and more diplomatic for the opposition members to wait until the presidential elections in 2018 instead of going to an open and serious confrontation with the authority and even then to come to power with the blessing of the current regime.

Armenian National Congress should pass next two convocations in the parliament by setting the unwritten rules of the game with the authorities without creating unnecessary problems. Moreover, it should constantly to position its leader Levon Zurabian in the presidential elections in 2013, forestalling to replace the president in 2018.

The regime may well agree to a deal with the pseudo-opposition.

The people of Armenia will be the only loser in this situation. Everything was shared and agreed, but nothing changed for people. The social position will deteriorate from year to year. It does not worth waiting a real opposition. The spheres of influence were divided long ago. The people's interests in this context are the last place.

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