Saturday, April 30, 2011

Week 25-30 April: Guests, at home

As last week post was devoted to guests coming from abroad, this week it's worthy to remind that guests sometimes aren't foreigners.

Is Musavat a political party of Azerbaijan or an unwelcome guest in the country?
Its offices were raided and the leader of its youth wing expelled from University, together with another Musavat activist.
Who's afraid of Musavat? It's not a terrorist association, it doesn't pose a threat to the ruling elite, it simply seems to have turned into a guest, after having been a part of Azerbaijani history for more than 100 years.

On the contrary, Poti had a special guest, warmly welcomed.
President Saakashvili visited the small town to celebrate the installation of a new radar. He picked up the chance to convoy his vision of Poti and its area in the future: "Port of Poti would become a main gait from the countries of Northern China and Middle Asian Countries in the direction of Europe. Poti will become a 100 percent employment city and we would even have deficiency in finding cadres [...]. Our aim is to activate Poti International airport by 2012. It will be an airport that would be able to operate in any weather conditions. [...] We are assuming that in 2012 more than two million tourists will visit Batumi and places nearby. Poti will also cover Mestia, which will become the most famous and successful skiing resorts minimum in Eastern Europe. Poti airport will also cover Anaklia that is on 15 km drive from here. A road will be constructed from Poti to Anaklia as well and Anaklia will be the most developed sea resort in Georgia and in 6 countries of black-sea region." (
What seems alien here is Poti itself, the way it is now.

From Georgia to Armenia.
And the trend is exactly this, not only on the route of import, but also on the path of reforms. Armenia sounds very interested in Georgia experience. Its own way, for sure.
"Armenian way" has proved to be a good remedy against bloody confrontation, so far. After the "deadline" posed by Levon Ter-Petrosyan, 2 out of 3 requests were met by President Sargsyan. Who could go so far as to meet also the third one (release of political prisoners of 2008) and keep the door open, to quote Ter-Petrosyan.
What's behind this new phase? Sargsyan in his first mandate proved to be a firm and stable president, his level of alert towards opposition may be low. Ter-Petrosyan tried his best to ride the wave of revolution, which proved to be an hazard/ a miscalculation. Now he's drawing a new strategy, that may put him at odds with the expectations of a part of his potential electorate.
For many, he may turn from a leader to a guest.

There are a lot of speculation about parliamentary elections in 2012, now that Prosperous Armenia made public that it will run alone.
Who knows, Sargsyan in long term may find convenient to meet even a radical request like early elections, under the pretest of a fragmentation of the winning bloc of 2008. Early parliamentary elections AND early presidential election in 2012. After all, he wouldn't be the only president in CIS countries to try and avoid 2013 to have his mandate renewed.
Unlikely, but not impossible.

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