Thursday, July 27 2017 18:28
Ani Mshetsyan

Claims of Miram CJSC at the beginning of geological exploration work  at the Shekakhbyur polymetallic deposit are illegal

Claims of Miram CJSC at the beginning of geological exploration work  at the Shekakhbyur polymetallic deposit are illegal

ArmInfo. Claims of Miram CJSC for the start of geological exploration at the Shekabyur polymetallic deposit are illegal. According to the authoritative state structures  of Armenia, Miram, which started work near the village of Ardvi, Lori  region, does not have the necessary credentials.

To note, on the eve of the protest action took place in the village  in connection with the company's intention to start geological and  prospecting works. The villagers blocked the road, saying that the  operation of the mine would damage the ecology of Ardvin, and would  also endanger the numerous cultural and historical monuments that are  on its territory.

In order to find out the true nature of the situation and the  objectivity of the complaints of the villagers, ArmInfo turned to  various state structures. So, the head of the Public Relations  Department of the Ministry of Nature Protection, Alla Sukiasyan, told  the agency's correspondent that "Miram" CJSC was not given an  appropriate environmental license, because the experts of the  Ministry could not go to the village and carry out the necessary  research because of yesterday's protest of the Ardvinians."

A spokesman for the Ministry of Energy Infrastructures and Natural  Resources Vasak Tartosyan said that Miram CJSC applied to the  ministry for obtaining a license for the mine operation, but so far  it has not received it, because before that the Ministry of Nature  Protection had to hold public discussions with the villagers, to  carry out the relevant examinations and issue their opinion. "And  only if there is a positive conclusion of the environmentalists, the  Ministry of Energy has the right to issue a license to operate the  mine," explained Tarposhyan.

As for the fears of the villagers about the possibility of destroying  the cultural and historical heritage located on the territory of  Ardvin, in case of exploitation of the mine, the head of the Agency  for the Protection of Historical and Cultural Monuments of the  Ministry of Culture Armen Abroyan dispersed them. In a conversation  with the correspondent of ArmInfo, in particular, he stated, the  Agency did not give any permission to this company to work in  specially protected areas where cultural and historical monuments are  located. "Hence, the company does not have any right to implement  works in the given locality. Without the appropriate permission of  our agency, this is simply not possible," he assured.

Meanwhile, the head of the village of Ardvin Samvel Kirakosyan, in an  interview with ArmInfo, said that he was not particularly inclined to  trust the assurances of state structures. "The matter is that the  villagers had to submit a pilot program for operating the mine, but  no project was submitted," he said, stressing that the dialogue can  only happen if the program is presented to the villagers and after  approval. "The voice of the people, the voice of God, and if my  fellow villagers oppose the opening of the mine, then I am against  it," Kirakosyan said. 

To note, Miram intends to carry out geological exploration works in  the area of 140 hectares in the zone of rural lands and pastures  during 2017-2020. In total, the area of the Ardvin pastures is 566  hectares. By the way, according to mass media information, the main  shareholding of Miram CJSC is affiliated to Vahram Baghdasaryan, the  head of the parliamentary faction of the ruling Republican Party, who  is from Lori region. However, in a conversation with ArmInfo  correspondent Baghdasaryan categorically denied this information. At  the same time, he noted that he did not mind that the mine was  exploited. "But if this goes against environmental norms and  threatens to destroy the cultural and historical heritage of the  village, then the exploitation of the mine is impermissible," he  said. 

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