Pashinyan re­luc­tant to bring cor­rupt for­mer of­fi­cials to jus­tice

Azer News - - Karabakh Conflict - By Rashid Shiri­nov

For many years, Armenia has been suf­fer­ing from a num­ber of prob­lems that the for­mer gov­ern­ment was unable to solve or just did not want to solve. The wide­spread cor­rup­tion was in the sec­ond cat­e­gory, since the gov­ern­ments of Serzh Sargsyan and his pre­de­ces­sor Robert Kocharyan were the main orig­i­na­tors of the cor­rupt sys­tem in Armenia.

There­fore, dur­ing the "vel­vet revo­lu­tion" in April, the protest leader Nikol Pashinyan, who is now the prime min­is­ter of Armenia, was em­pha­siz­ing that he would al­legedly fight cor­rup­tion in the coun­try and bring to jus­tice those who have made a for­tune through em­bez­zle­ment, cor­rup­tion and mo­nop­o­lies.

The new di­rec­tor of Armenia’s Na­tional Se­cu­rity Coun­cil Ar­tur Vanet­syan has also made sim­i­lar state­ments. He claimed that ap­pro­pri­ate ac­tiv­i­ties have al­ready be­gun and promised to dis­close the names of 350 cor­rupt of­fi­cials in the near fu­ture.

Ob­vi­ously, such strong state­ments from the new gov­ern­ment dis­turbed many of Armenia’s for­mer of­fi­cials from Kocharyan and Sargsyan’s en­tourage, who il­le­gally made huge for­tunes. The Ar­me­nian me­dia have found out that sev­eral for­mer of­fi­cials be­gan to ex­port their il­le­gal cap­i­tal abroad af­ter the change of power in the coun­try.

How­ever, time goes by but Pashinyan and Vanet­syan are re­luc­tant to ful­fill their prom­ises. The cor­rupt of­fi­cials are still at large, in­clud­ing Kocharyan and Sargsyan, whose per­sonal wealth is es­ti­mated at $4 bil­lion and $7 bil­lion re­spec­tively. For many years, th­ese two men were the main fig­ures of the cor­rupt sys­tem in Armenia. The ques­tion now arises whether Pashinyan will go for bring­ing Kocharyan and Sargsyan to jus­tice or he will pun­ish only their un­der­lings.

If Pashinyan chooses the first op­tion, he will raise his cred­i­bil­ity both in Armenia it­self and in the in­ter­na­tional arena. How­ever, if Pashinyan se­lects the sec­ond op­tion, he will thereby con­firm the ru­mors that he has con­cluded an agree­ment with Sargsyan pro­vid­ing power to Pashinyan in ex­change for se­cu­rity of Sargsyan and his cor­rupt team.

In that case, no real changes will oc­cur in the fight against cor­rup­tion, since Kocharyan and Sargsyan are still in con­trol of the cor­rupt sys­tem in Armenia. The coun­try’s pop­u­la­tion knows ex­actly that if Pashinyan re­ally wants to com­bat cor­rup­tion, he will have to start with th­ese two per­sons.

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