Does population trust Pashinyan's team?

Does population trust Pashinyan's team?

Last week a large group of residents of Chambarak organized a protest near the government building demanding compensation promised a few years ago for lost land and houses. In 1992, due to military operations in Chambarak, residents of Artsvashen village, an Armenian enclave in the territory of Azerbaijan, had to flee. In 2009, government of Tigran Sargsyan decided to compensate refugees for received damage and allocate about 12.4 million dollars to them. But by 2011 only 10% of the promised amount was paid. Apparently, the government considered this issue already resolved.

On September 20, protesters demanded a meeting with Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan. He offered them to choose five people who will come to the government building on October 2 to discuss all problems in detail.

Protests in Armenia are not new. They were held when previous government was in power, but experts associate today's protests with inability of the new government to solve problems. Skeptics even predict new revolution with the goal of overthrowing Pashinyan. However, most analysts believe that today's protests have become an indicator that authorities began to address various problems. The fact is that many problems in Armenia weren't solved for years: authorities either made promises, or imitated some activity, just like it happened with refugees case.

Previous authorities ensured their safety through falsifications of elections at all levels, which relieved former ruling Republican Party and its leader Serzh Sargsyan from any responsibility.

Pashinyan, who lead the "Velvet" revolution, came to power with his team on the wave of population's trust, which means he's supposed to promote the development of approaches based on citizens' desires. On the other hand, society associates its hopes with people who overthrew hateful regime. Perhaps combination of these two components helped to resolve several old problems.

Of course, only a small fraction of problems was resolbed, many of them are still awaiting resolution. It's obvious that right now the government needs trust of the population. September 23 elections to the Council of Elders of Yerevan, where more than a third of voters of the country live, demonstrated that current government has a sufficiently high credibility. Turnover reached 43.65% (usually it's around 35%), and Prime Minister's block received 81.06% of votes.

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Vestnik Kavkaza

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