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Armenia: Predictable politics and apathetic youth

A lot of things happening in the political landscape of Armenia are anticipated and predictable “by journalists and people on the street alike”, Notes from Hairenik states, building up his speculations around the fact, that this predictability in the Armenian politics leads to apathy, as people do not see their vote as a decisive factor in bringing change to the country:

When politics is predictable, apathy abound. Supposedly we just have to take things as they are reported by the Armenian media or by word of mouth. There’s nothing else to be done except to let it happen, at least that is the vibe I have been getting.

Despite the overall mode, the blogger insists, that it is the Armenian citizens who will ultimately determine the course of the elections. Still in another post here, Notes from Hairenik quotes The Armenian Weekly newspaper on the topic of political apathy, especially among the Armenian youth:

Indeed, the trend of people in their twenties is to leave, mostly because of the common belief that “Armenia is not a country” or that “there’s nothing here” to keep them. … Even if someone does have a well-paying job, for instance as a software programmer, leaving the country is nearly always considered a better option.

Still, the blogger is optimistic, and the youth movement Sksela which has been covered extensively in the Armenian blogosphere over the last couple of months has a lot to do with the fact it seems:

However, this is not entirely the case. Although they are a minority, some youth are clearly trying to become involved in civil society and build the democratic process. And they are trying to get the message out to those who are for the most part unaware.

Interestingly, EurasiaNet has recently published Onnik Krikorian’s article on Sksel a and attempts to target youth in Armenia by political parties such as Prosperous Armenia.

Youth in newspaper hats stand on street corners and read aloud from Armenian dailies. Masked young people march by parliament yelling “Don’t Eat Too Much!” at deputies. It’s election season in Armenia, and with the parliamentary vote just over a month away, one unconventional youth group is waging weekly war on widespread political apathy.

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