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For the second time, theories about being an "agent of influence" are being put forward in the NA hall. Vice-speaker Hakob Arshakyan stated this in the National Assembly (NA) of Armenia Monday—and referring to the opposition MPs accusing NA deputy speaker Ruben Rubinyan—the special representative of the country in the negotiations with Turkey—of being "an agent of influence" of Turkey.

Arshakyan said: "I just want to warn our opposition colleagues that trying to label a person, bringing, linking his being in a country during the revolution [in 2018] or any other period to being an 'agent of influence' is the same as linking anyone to being or not being an agent based on his last name. Please look around, and you may find suspicious surnames in the surnames. But I also do not recommend [it] because it is a wrong practice."

The vice-speaker chairing the NA sitting, Rubinyan, interrupted and said: "I am announcing a reprimand. What was your name? To Hripsime Stambulyan. It seems to me that you do not understand well, you think it is wrong. I already call on your whole faction to calm down. I will do what I want."

One of the opposition lawmakers responded, "You can't!" And Rubinyan replied by yelling: "Control! I can."

Then he got up abruptly from his NA speaker’s seat, went down, and the situation became tense.

Shortly afterwards, Rubinyan returned to his seat and called on everyone: "Sit in your seats! Mr. Arshakyan, continue."

But as the passions did not subside, Ruben Rubinyan announced a recess, noting that the NA session would resume after the long intermission.

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