Why does the Prosperous Armenia Party target Heritage? Against the background of the presidential election process it is quite logical. Heritage is actually the force which could make, as the PAP says, the alternative pole. The point is that discussions on the joint opposition candidate are underway in Armenia, and the PAP-Congress-ARF triplet is seen as the axis of these discussions.
Heritage will most probably refuse to join this format and will nominate its own candidate who will most probably be Raffi Hovhannisyan. This will be the first opportunity for Raffi Hovhannisyan to run for president in Armenia since he became an Armenian citizen only in 2001.
But the issue for the PAP is not only Heritage. If Heritage is alone with its candidate, it will hardly be a trouble for the PAP-Congress-ARF trio. The issue is that Heritage may become the axis of an alternative “joint” format. Free Democrats, Republic Party and other forces which left or will still leave the Congress may join the Heritage. Besides, Heritage may get even stronger with the help of different initiatives and movements since it is very active in the civil field.
It is not ruled out that the possible blocs by Heritage become a competitor not only to the aforementioned trio but even prevent its formation because seeing such events around Heritage the Armenian National Congress may refuse a joint election process with the PAP since it may lead to marginalization or radical change or destruction.
It is not excluded that the Congress does not run that risk for the sake of floating at the political surface because the risk that the PAP may to use the Congress for the presidential elections and get rid of it afterwards is also high, taking into account that quite different resources will be necessary for the period 2017-18.
Consequently, the Congress will not join the possible bloc formed around Heritage but it will try to refuse the deadly game against the PAP in order to stay alive though it will hardly help Congress anyway.
Meanwhile, it is extremely important for the PAP to be able to keep the “joint” front formed on the eve of the parliamentary election because after the presidential election it will be necessary to discuss the issue of redistribution of power and here the “joint” format will bring some weight to the PAP.
At the same time, the issue can have an external aspect as well. The point is that the pole to be formed around Heritage will evidently be composed of pro-West forces which want to see the Western civilization in Armenia.
The PAP position recently has been pro-Eurasian or “Putin policy”. It is not surprising in this case that the PAP launches open campaign against Heritage.