2019 August 14
Anti-Corruption & News - Aug/14/2019 ::: Borders moved 1km forward; Army denies claims of soldier deserting ::: Fewer unemployed ::: Kocharyan trial update ::: Examination shows risks by Amulsar mine are manageable ::: HHK Education Minister's assistant arrested; embezzlement :: Housing for soldiers
Disclaimer: All the accused are innocent until proven guilty by the court of law, even if they may sound as being guilty. Currency in Armenian Drams unless specified otherwise.
Military: the Azeri media lied about the Armenian soldier Araik Ghazaryan deserting to Azeri side due to torture by fellow soldiers. The dark spots on the soldier's fingers that were shown on Azeri media outlets and presented as torture, were from a July/24/2019 surgery that the soldier received at a hospital to remove mole-like growths from the finger. Records of this medical procedure exist in the hospital and elsewhere, and were confirmed by his brother. The investigation revealed that he had no head injury at the time of leaving the trenches, says Military.
Since 2017, at the expense of own land or no man's land near the border with Tavush province, Azerbaijan moved its positions ~550m forward, and Armenia moved it ~1250m forward. The development of new positions accelerated in 2019 which resulted in occasional shootouts. One Armenian soldier was wounded today.
Satellite images show the Azeri side has not gained any strategically important new heights despite what their media told the internal audience recently.
Defense Ministry spokesman said the Armenian army does not always announce its own territorial improvements in order not to provoke, but won't hesitate to "show off its abilities if needed".
Satellite photos showing engineering work (light green old Armenian position, dark green new positions)
Justice Ministry has a proposal to criminalize direct calls of violence advocating for murder or other serious physical harm to someone's health. It could be punished by 3-6 years. Such violence is already a felony in Armenia, and inciting this type of violence should also be a felony, says Ministry. Council of Europe has advocated for member states to have similar laws. https://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/167409
US has placed sanctions on 17 firms located in UK, Canada, Georgia, Armenia and elsewhere, for doing business with Iranian firms that are under direct US sanctions. Two Armenian companies (105 employees) were impacted. Both are managed by the same person who claims one of the firms hasn't done business with Iran since 2009. The firms are accused of purchasing some sanctioned items and reselling them to Iran without a license.
Kocharyan's lawyers are accusing the judicial system of deliberately delaying the case. Here are some chronological details:
September 2018: Lower court judge Davit Grigoryan gets a complaint written against him. He's accused of falsifying documents to claim prosecutors and plaintiffs were notified to appear in court but didn't. Plaintiff claims he suffered damages from this.
February 2019: Investigation of forgery continues against judge Grigoryan.
May 20 2019: Judge Grigoryan, now chosen as the judge to hear the Kocharyan case, releases Kocharyan from jail.
June 25 2019: Appeals court finds judge Grigoryan's verdict invalid and sends Kocharyan back to jail. New case must be re-opened in lower court where the same judge Grigoryan has to hear the case again.
July 2019: The earlier investigation of Judge Grigoryan concludes he should be charged with forgery. Judge Grigoryan is suspended by the Supreme Court Council board.
Several times in July-August: Kocharyan team sends a petition to lower court to re-hear the Kocharyan case. The lower court tells them that judge Grigoryan, who was supposed to hear the case, is suspended and the case hasn't been assigned to someone else yet. Kocharyan team sends multiple complaints to ECHR (no response yet) complaining that the case isn't accepted in lower court yet.
August 8: Meanwhile, the higher Cassations court accepts Kocharyan's petition to challenge Appeals court's verdict that sent Kocharyan back to jail.
August 14: Supreme Court Council hears Kocharyan's complaints that lower court is keep delaying the acceptance of the case. Council cites the law saying if a lower court judge is suspended, his work is usually transferred to another judge. However, since in August 8 the Cassations court already accepted the case to hear the challenge, the case cannot be transferred to another lower court judge.
ELARD environmental examination firm has concluded the examination of Amulsar mine and found that its operations by Lydian Armenia is unlikely to cause problems for the nearby water resources and Sevan, because no direct underground paths exist that would allow mining waste to mix with the underground waters. The existing waste flow sensors are sufficient. In the event of an earthquake, however, changes could happen in which the polluted water could pour into a nearby waterways and reach Sevan.
In terms of air pollution, no problems were found that cannot be taken under control to minimize pollution. The nearby settlements are far enough, but the existing pollution monitoring systems are advised to be improved.
Because overall the risks are manageable, investigators will drop the felony investigation.
Lori governor says the audits revealed that Vanadzor's former mayor Samvel Darbinyan illegally sold the city's culture house to his relative for 10mln in 2004. Says it'll be "recovered". He criticized the city council members who voted in favor.
Former HHK Education Minister Armen Ashotyan's assistant and driver Aram Barseghyan is charged with embezzling state funds between 2009-2016.
Investigators says between 2009-2016, while serving as Minister Ashotyan's driver/assistant, he abused the connections to register himself as an employee at an Armenian-Greek state college, an employee at Kotayk college between 2011-2016, and got paid 8.7mln without going to work. In 2016, Ashotyan intervened to have him register as a driver at state economics university, say investigators.
Pashinyan says the govt will give 2.9bln to Artsakh Republic to help military pensionaires solve their housing problems by 2023. He made the promise in August 5th during "Armenia 2050" speech.
The number of registered unemployed residents is down 6.4% in 1H19 vs 1H18. Each registered employee is legally required to pay a 1,000 AMD fee towards the army from the paycheck. These 1k collections rose by 9.6% instances, or 348mln AMD.
Pashinyan testing his English skills by working as a guide for tourists
Kaynine doggos 🎥
Link to original report: https://www.reddit.com/r/armenia/comments/cqdynr/anticorruption_news_aug142019_borders_moved_1km/
|2018 Daily Armenia Reports|
|2019 Daily Armenia Reports|