ArmInfo.Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and Minister of Territorial Administration and Infrastructure Suren Papikyan left for Jermuk today, August 23. "Let's go to Jermuk," Pashinyan wrote on his Facebook page and released a photo in which he and Papikyan are sitting in the cockpit of the premier helicopter. Judging by another premiere in the social network, they are already in Jermuk.
It should be noted that the visit of the head of government is most likely connected with the protests of the city residents against the development of the Amkulsar gold mine. The latter is located 10 kilometers in a straight line from Jermuk. After Pashinyan gave a green light to the program during a Facebook live broadcast on August 19, saying that according to the authorities, Amulsar does not harm Sevan and the environment, residents of the surrounding areas and Jermuk assured that they will take part in unlimited protests, but not will continue to operate the mine.
It is noteworthy that, according to the report of the Office of the Armenian Ombudsman, a working group left for Jermuk today in order to clarify the situation surrounding the exploitation of the Amulsar field, on behalf of the Commissioner for Human Rights. Meetings are planned with residents of the Gndevaz community, which is the zone of direct impact of the project, the resort town of Jermuk, citizens on duty in the mine, in order to interfere with operation.
Recall that on August 14, the Investigative Committee of Armenia presented an expert opinion on the Amulsar project of the consulting company Earthlink & Advanced Resources Development (ELARD). Based on the conclusion of the examination, the SC of Armenia stated that there is no direct connection between the underground waters located on the territory of the Amulsar project and the thermal hot springs of Jermuk. There is also no connection with the waters of the Sevan basin. Moreover, as indicated in the UK, during an earthquake, a certain concentration of acid drainage can penetrate into the basin of Lake Sevan through the Spandaryan and Ketchut reservoirs. However, the combination of this concentration will be insignificant on the scale of Lake Sevan. The third important conclusion: the impact on the Arpa, Vorotan and Darb rivers can be mitigated if Lydian Armenia takes 16 environmental mitigation measures proposed by experts. According to Hayk Grigoryan, the head of the IC, Lydian Armenia representatives have already expressed their readiness to implement 15 of the proposed 16 events: they are already carrying out 10 events, 5 will be ready to conduct in the near future. Residents of the resort town of Jermuk, environmentalists and activists opposed to the development of the mine did not agree with the conclusions and came out to protest.
As a result, on the eve of the morning, Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan held a discussion with interested parties. The latter, after the meeting, stated that they were dissatisfied with the meeting and would continue their struggle, guided by the motto: "Amulsar should remain a mountain and a point." Activists in protest decided to block Baghramyan Avenue, many moved to the building of the National Assembly of Armenia, a brawl took place between police officers and participants in the protest. As a result, for the failure to comply with the legal requirements of police officers, six citizens were subjected to drive. On the issue, the prime minister also held a closed meeting with deputies of the My Step faction. Already in the evening, during the promised "live broadcast," the Prime Minister said that according to the government, Amulsar does not harm Sevan. "He will work according to the highest environmental criteria. If we do not fulfill the conditions set by us, we will be taken lightly. I'm on 99.9% sure that the field does not pose a threat to the ecology of the Republic of Armenia. Therefore, we must fulfill the conditions that we set, "he said, concluding by bewildering by disobedience actions arranged by citizens. However, on August 21, the Prime Minister decided to send the conclusion of ELARD on the Amulsar project to the Ministry of the Environment, "with the request to find out whether the conclusion really contains data that, according to the legislation of Armenia, require a new environmental impact assessment."
Lydian Armenia is a subsidiary of British Lydian International. The Amulsar project is the largest industrial project in Armenia today for the development of the Amulsar gold deposit with a total value of $ 370 million. In August 2016, the start of the project involving the construction and development of the deposit took place.