Sunday, December 21, 2008

Anyone want some Molybdenum, and don't forget the bananas...

Edik Baghdassaryan of Hetq recently wrote an article inquiring about the importation and exportation of Molybdenum in Armenia. It's quite a story, and made me very curious. And it reminded me of the Hetq story on the importation/exportation of Bananas in Armenia, with the follow up article.
Go ahead and google "molybdenum armenia." The third result shows that Karen Karapetian was the manager, and maybe still is. So I looked him up. The first google result for Karen Karapetian is this, telling us that,among other things, he was a member of the National Assembly and on the Standing Committee on Financial-Credit, Budgetary and Economic Affairs. But I couldn't confirm that he was still an NA member as his name does not show up on the NA website. And, I thought I remembered that he was politically affiliated, though that site says he is not. He is in fact a member of the Republican Party, and there is a info page about him, the most recent update of which says that "Since 2006 has been a member of Republican Party of Armenia. On 22 June 2006 was elected a member of RPA board and chairman of the economic commission of RPA."
But let's keep looking.
I put "Karen Karapetian" into search in RFE/RL/ArmeniaLiberty. There are alot of articles, including the Press Review, and tons of information, I've chosen a few key informative quotes - I've tried to put them from oldest to newest:

Aug 27, 2002 The paper also quotes the leader of the People's Deputy parliamentary group, Karen Karapetian, as saying that there will be less vote buying in the next elections. Many members of the non-partisan group have been accused of buying their way into the parliament. Speaking about that, Karapetian says: "After all, if the candidates are handing out something during elections, let them do that. I find it normal. They are stealing so much from the people. Let them give something back," says the parliamentarian who made a fortune in Russia.

May 19, 2006 ” According to the paper, the HHK is the largest and wealthiest of such tutelages. Interviewed by “Aravot,” Karen Karapetian confirms reports that his People’s Deputy parliamentary group has been offered senior posts in return for lending support to the coalition. “There are some proposals,” he says. “We are still discussing them.”

October 25, 2006 Defense Minister Serzh Sarkisian, who has been actively involved in Russian-Armenian energy dealings, also strongly hinted at the pipeline’s imminent transfer under ARG control. He said he will ask the ARG chief executive, Karen Karapetian, to publicly “explain the situation in great detail.” The pipeline from Iran was supposed to end Armenia’s strong dependence on Russian gas and other energy resources. Critics say that by putting it under de facto Russian control the Armenian government would only deepen that dependence. [ARG=ArmRosGazprom]

December 5, 2006 In particular, claims the paper, a wealthy Russian-based brother of senior lawmaker Karen Karapetian told Republican leaders that he and many other Armenian businessmen working in Russia will contribute to the HHK’s victory in the polls with cash provided that Karapetian is appointed prime minister in 2008. It says Sarkisian’s and Prime Minister Andranik Markarian’s response to Samvel Karapetian was rather ambiguous.

February1, 2007 “Hayk” alleges that Karen Karapetian, the leader of the People’s Deputy parliamentary group and a senior member of the Republican Party (HHK), has already begun handing out vote bribes in several Armenian regions. “Of course, Mr. Karapetian is not personally going from house to house and giving cash. That is being done for him by the leaders of the HHK structures in those regions,” says the paper.

June 11, 2007 “Hayk” describes the situation of the Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) after the elections, arguing that “it has finally become [Prime Minister] Serzh Sarkisian’s personal property.” “Old Republican Party members have been pushed to the background… But the most interesting is whom they picked for the head of the HHK parliamentary faction – the Tashir department store owner Karen Karapetian, who is doing his business under Serzh Sarkisian’s patronage, and as long as Serzh Sarkisian has ambitions to become president, Karapetian will consider himself to be one of Serzh’s closest and most loyal deputies in parliament.”

September 30, 2008 President Serzh Sarkisian appointed on Tuesday a leading member of his Republican Party of Armenia (HHK), Karen Karapetian, as the new chief of his staff. A member of the Armenian parliament since 1995, Karapetian was until now the leader of the largest National Assembly faction representing the HHK. The previous head of the presidential administration, Hovik Abrahamian, was elected parliament speaker on Monday as part of a leadership reshuffle reportedly engineered by Sarkisian months ago.

[image is from an article on in 2006]


Ani said...

It's like they're putting on an Armenian version of "How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying"....

Search engines are a wonderful thing, aren't they?

tzitzernak2 said...

Gotta love Google! and there's so much more...