Never Say Never: Former President Kocharyan on possible political comeback
Never Say Never: Former President Kocharyan on possible political comeback –
Former Armenian president Robert Kocharyan does not rule out the possibility of his return to active politics, but says he has still not decided whether to come out of political retirement. This emerged on Monday when RFE/RL published excerpts of a broader interview with the ex-leader.
“In politics, they say never say never,” Kocharyan said, according to the Prague-headquartered radio station that is expected to broadcast the full interview taken as part of a special series of programs in October or November. “I feel great in my current status, but I find it difficult to say what will happen in the future. I don’t want to bring more clarity to the issue first of all because there is no such clarity.”
“There is no personal desire to return, enter the fray, and again shoulder that burden of responsibility. But there are always certain circumstances,” the ex-president added.
Kocharyan, who led Armenia as head of state in 1998-2008, has increasingly criticized his successor Serzh Sargsyan in the past several years. In his previous interviews the former leader, in particular, described the constitutional reform initiated by the current administration as at least unnecessary. He did not mention the matter in the latest public comments published by RFE/RL’s Armenian Service.
(The proposed changes to the Constitution transform Armenia into a parliamentary republic, which observers say will further complicate Kocharian’s possible political comeback.)
Instead, Kocharyan effectively defended the recent street protests in Yerevan against rising electricity prices. “When the economic situation is not quite good, even a minor rise in tariffs has a substantial impact on every citizen’s budget and in this regard people rightly resent … The emotional perception of people having to pay more every month is understandable to me,” he said.