Caucasus Reality 19 february — 12:21

Armenian political analysts: Sargsyan's interview is attempt to justify himself and return to power

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The first interview of Serzh Sargsyan, the third president of Armenia, given after the "velvet revolution", indicates his desire to rehabilitate himself in the changed political situation, the political analysts interviewed by the Caucasian Knot believe.

Serzh Sargsyan, a former President of Armenia, gave an exclusive interview, in which he commented on the "velvet revolution" of 2018, the settlement of the Karabakh conflict and the last year's autumn war in Nagorno-Karabakh. The war was lost not by the Armenian Army and people, but by Nikol Pashinyan's government, he says in the interview posted on February 16 on the ArmNews YouTube channel.

Armen Vardanyan, a political scientist, has recalled that Serzh Sargsyan said more than once that he would give an interview. "But if he had spoken earlier, he would have been criticized. Therefore, he waited until the rating of the ruling power went down, and tried to rehabilitate himself," Mr Vardanyan has noted.

The former president also found it necessary to self-justify before his political allies on why he failed to retain power in April 2018, Mr Vardanyan has noted. "Sargsyan is accused of the fact that after his surrender of the power to Pashinyan, many became outcasts and were subjected to criminal prosecution. Sargsyan himself has escaped serious accusations; and they cannot forgive him for this," Armen Vardanyan has explained.

Sargsyan wants to "show that he has nothing to do with Pashinyan," said Armen Badalyan, a political technologist. "He is trying to allay suspicions that in 2018 there was not a revolution, but a pre-planned power transfer," he told the Caucasian Knot correspondent.

According to his version, political allies are reasonably suspecting the third president of a behind-the-scenes agreement. Many facts of the April 2018 protests "support suspicions that there was some behind-the-scenes agreement that Sargsyan received personal guarantees," Mr Badalyan said. Now, in order to answer these claims, "he is trying to disown Pashinyan," the political technologist has concluded.

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