"THE OPPOSITION ALSO CONSIDERS THE NECESSITY OF CHANGE; THEY HOWEVER ARE GUIDED BY THE PRINCIPLE THAT EVERYTHING MUST COME DOWN AND BE REBUILT FROM SCRATCH. SUCH A SUPPOSITION NOT ONLY LACKS A SOLID FOUNDATION–BUT IS ALSO ABOVE THE CAPABILITIES OF THE OPPOSITION."
YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)– "Presently the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) is considered a full-fledged political force in Armenia; it no longer draws solely from its past experience–but reaches out today to a broad spectrum of society who understands and embraces ARF’s message," stressed ARF Supreme Body member Aghvan Vartanian during a May 13 press conference. He added that if the ARF continues to reach out to the population with this same conviction–it will gain solid representation in the future parliament.
Addressing the assertion of a politician–that if the ARF gains the majority in both legislative and executive bodies–the stability of the country will be endangered–A. Vartanian responded: "First of all–we are more realistic than that–and don’t believe that we will enjoy an overwhelming majority in all government sectors–however fit we may be to assume the responsibility. Second–if only ten out of the twenty ministers–regardless of their party belonging–were as competent and worked wholeheartedly as the two ministers that belong to the ARF–David Lokian–the minister of urban planning–and Levon Mkrtchian–the minister of education and planning–the predicamen’s of various sectors would be very different today."
On the whole–the ARF–Vartanian said–is content with mass media coverage of Parliamentary election campaigning and the manner in which the campaigning is proceeding.
Speaking about the Mass Media bill–Vartanian explained that such a bill is not only necessary–but is also required to fulfill requiremen’s before the Council of Europe. "The draft law fundamentally corresponds to international standards; those points disputed by Armenia’s mass media should be ironed out after the first reading to formulate a truly great law."
When asked what he thought about Galust Sahakian’s (head of Unity block in parliament) statement during interview with the Haykakan Zhamanak daily–in which he refers to the behavior of the ARF and the Orinats Yerkir party as that of "courtesans" aiming to satisfy both the government and the people–Vartanian replied: "Even though Galust Sahakian represents the Republican party–his assessment does not correspond to the official stance of the Republican Party of Armenia–and I don’t take it seriously–especially knowing the personality and manner by which of Mr. Sahakian lives his life." Vartanian continued–"Galust Sahakian–however–failed to understand the ARF’s programs–its approaches–its ideology. We are certain that our principles are greater than the degree of his judgment."
Vartanian stressed that the ARF supported Robert Kocharian’s candidacy for president–certain that changes are possible and necessary for the country and they can be executed during his term. "The opposition also considers the necessity of change; they however are guided by the principle that everything must come down and be rebuilt from scratch. Such a supposition not only lacks a solid foundation–but is also above the capabilities of the opposition."