Sunday, March 25, 2007

Some sad news

Tragedy in Yerevan

So the Prime Minister of Armenia died today. Andranik Margaryan was his name. He was a fairly young man, only 55. But he had heart problems and they caught up with him this morning.

He is actually the second prime minister of that country to die in the last eight years. In 1999 Prime Minister Vazgen Sargsyan was assassinated after rebels stormed the parliament and started shooting up the place. Vazgen was then replaced as prime minister by his younger brother Aram, who was then promptly fired and replaced by the late Mr. Maragaryan.

Armenia is another country with a bit of a revolving door at the PM's office. Whoever is chosen to replace Maragaryan will be the 11th prime minister since Armenia separated from the USSR in 1990. Only two presidents though. I wonder which office holds more power...

Local nerd to continue governing city-state

Donald Tsang was re-elected as CEO of Hong Kong this weekend. The Hong Kong Chief Executive is chosen through a convoluted system which the Chinese government considers "democratic" but no one else does. Basically there is this "council of voters" which consists of about 800 people. The Chinese government appoints the majority of them, but some are also elected by citizens of Hong Kong themselves. But only certain citizens who are members of certain elite professions deemed worthy to vote by the People's government.

There was some hope that the Chinese would bow to the demands of democratic activists in Hong Kong and turn the CEO into a truly elected office, chosen by all citizens in a general election. But no. The council voted 81% in favor of giving Mr. Tsang a second term.

Tsang is one of the few world leaders who wears a bow-tie. The only other one I can think of off-hand is Toomas Hendrik, the president of Estonia.

7 comments:

J Muller said...

You know, the fact that you can pick an article of clothing (in this case, the bow tie) and think of world leaders who wear that article of clothing, especially minor ones like the president of Estonia, is a testament to the depth with which you have plunged yourself into the politics of world leaders.

It's also pretty ridiculous, if you think about it. No offense.

Ricardo said...

Man he wears that tie well.

Totally says something about Hong Kong having a CEO as its head of state.

megs said...

Love the bowtie. The election process sounds to me like very early republican process, and since my husband just had to get a new Canadian passport, Canadian passport procedure. Ah, certain professions the government deems worthy, aren't you so special.

Eric Stimson said...

The president holds more power.

Donson said...

The only other leader I can think of who wore a bowtie was Mike Pearson...really, I have no idea of anyone else. Maybe future US Prez George Will? haha...

Anonymous said...

I always feel terrible when I think of Armenia. We failed the Armenians terribly, and I dearly hope that they will get a good and firmly democratic leader. Good being the operative word, I think.

And I hope the Turks will admit to their crimes, too.

Anonymous said...

The Esonian president's surname is actually Ilves. Toomas Hendrik are his given names. :)