2019 July 24

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Anti-Corruption Daily

News & Anti-Corruption - Jul/24/2019::: Kocharyan lawsuit ::: Migration decreases ::: Karabakh road ::: Fake News ::: Sevan National Park ::: Police & Crime stats ::: ու ::: Hot Line ::: Neighborhood news ::: more inside
by ar_david_hh

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.

Kocharyan had his property and assets frozen last year. When his's house was being searched, the investigators confiscated an additional $27,000 in cash.

Kocharyan argued in court that the investigators didn't have the right to confiscate that money. The investigators argued that since Kocharyan's assets were frozen, that large amount of cash could also be considered an asset and be confiscated.

Last month the lower court sided with Kocharyan, but at the same time the court ruled that as of writing that verdict, the investigators didn't have to return the money.

Prosecutors didn't like the verdict and challenged it in Appeals court. Today it upheld the lower court's verdict. The judge sarcastically asked the investigator "if you found chairs in his house, would you confiscate those as well?"

(It is unclear if the investigators were told to return the money this time. They have 2 weeks to challenge today's verdict.)

https://armtimes.com/hy/article/166989 - - - https://armenpress.am/arm/news/982687.html - - - https://factor.am/169946.html

FIP outlet found that some of yesterday's media reports about significantly more Armenians leaving to Russia, were presented in a misleading way. https://fip.am/7681

The Russian source says the abnormal increase in the overall number of registered work migrants in Russia could be due to the recent changes made in the methodology used by the Russian census.

"Также резкое изменение показателя может объясняться новой коррекцией методики учета миграции, предпринятой в текущем году"


Today, the Armenian census agency released the migration stats for the first 6 months of 2019. These stats are not just about Russia, but in general. The Russian census' data was only for 3 months, and obviously limited to Russia.

In the first halves of 2015-2019, the combined air and land emigration stats continue to show a sharp decrease in the number of people leaving Armenia: 75k, 67k, 38k, 6k, 2k. (people leaving minus people arriving)

Armenian Census bureau says the Russian census methodology is unclear. Russian census said that in 2017 there were 316k Armenian citizens in Russia, 326k in 2018, and in 2019 it decreased to 303k. Armenian census says the number of Armenian migrants who work in Russia legally has decreased by 9k since 2017.

Conclusion: Migration is still decreasing based on stats from a wider 6-month period. Migration specifically to Russia increased during a narrower 3-month period, if we are to assume Russian census methodology hasn't changed.

(Some questions I have about the Russian census. I get the impression they count foreign nationals who arrive to Russia. If an Armenian national living in Belarus moves to Russia, would the Russian census count him as a migrant from Armenia?)

https://armtimes.com/hy/article/167000 --- https://armtimes.com/hy/article/166922 ---

Beginning 2020, Germany will allow Georgian nationals to find a job offer in Germany then move there legally. They can also visit Germany for 6 months for special education and meanwhile look for a job.


The government will build a new 150km road in the southern part of the country to connect Kapan to Artsakh's Hadrut city in 2020.

"It'll be built quickly, we have the money", said a Security Council member.

https://armtimes.com/hy/article/166996 --- Eng http://arka.am/en/news/politics/new_150_kilometer_road_to_connect_armenia_and_artsakh_in_2020/

Ministry of Labor says there is a fake news circulating by some outlets alleging that the Ministry is changing official forms to add a 3rd gender as an option.

Click here if you're Concerned® https://armenpress.am/arm/news/982679.html

Diasporan "Ramkavar Azatakan" party released a statement condemning fake news "intended to harm Armenia-Diaspora relations", which was circulated by some outlets claiming that Ramkavar condemned the Pashinyan administration for the judicial system crisis.

Party says "oligarchs" forged their signature and party logo before releasing the statement. Ramkavar says they support QP's judicial reforms towards "freeing it from the previous government".

ARF, Yerkir Tsirani and other small opposition parties had earlier released a statement saying Pashinyan is intervening in judicial matters.


ANCA group and the Assyrian version of ANCA signed a cooperation package in California.


Pro-Armenian Congressman Frank P. is working on a resolution to encourage the US State Department to recognize Armenia as a strategic partner in the region. He says the 2018 revolution and the strengthening of democracy and rule of law must play a role, and it doesn't matter that Russians have a military base in the country.


Sevan National Park director Vahe Gulanyan gave an interview. He has a slightly different opinion regarding the algae growth's primary reasons. He says...

Every year algae grows and disappears, but at a different scale. It's a normal process. Last year the impact was worse, but 2006 was the worst in recent times. Lakes have the ability to clean themselves. Algae breakup usually lasts 15 days, after which they die and sink.

The main reason for growth is higher temperatures, says Gulanyan. Two winters in a row the temps have been high. Conditions were good for algae. Iron and nitrogen are the contributing factors in the recent growth, and not the phosphorus, believes the director.

Water levels in the past 4 years have only risen by 20cm, while 1m before that (more water = cooler). He doesn't believe restaurant's pollution is a big factor, but laundry detergent from nearby population is a problem. This causes phosphorus levels to rise.

He predicted the algae bloom for 2018 and 2019 a year ago, and says there will be another similar algae bloom in mid-August of this year. If it does bloom again this year, there won't be one next year.

Gulanyan believes the tourist agencies that sell travel packages to Georgia have an influence over the news, and every year they fear-monger the population about the water quality to prevent them from vacationing in Sevan. A journalist comes, walks for hours to find a single spot with green growth, can't find anything significant, posts a picture from the last year and tells the readers that the water is dangerous, thinks Gulanyan.


Sevan. Tourists. Water samples. Looks like Maldives. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZpMsz1mHa54

We already know that Sevan needs to have more water to keep the inner layers cool. The water level is measured from the ocean level to the upper layer of the lake. Because the water depth keeps going up and down, a certain level is regulated by law, and nearby buildings cannot be built lower than that level.

Until December-2008 that legal level for buildings was 1908 meters from the ocean. That's when the government relaxed it to 1905m. This was met with criticism that HHK was trying to allow oligarchs to build dachas near the lake.

FIP outlet found some buildings owned by several former/current officials that are too close to the water.

Former police chief Vladimir Gasparyan (whose business is tied with illegal sig fishing and sale) has one such summerhouse on the right corner of Sevan.

BHK chief Gagik Tsarukyan owns one at a 1901m level, near Lavanda City vacation resort.

Former HFF chief oligarch Ruben Hayrapetyan's house is neighboring Tsarukyan and is below 1905m. The latter also owns Harsnaqar restaurant complex part of which is below the legal level.

Robert Kocharyan's son Sedrak's "Kaputak Sevan" vacation resort is also below legal limit.

QP MP Sasun Mikaelyan has a house at a 1901m level.

Other notable owners are former oligarch Lfik Samo, HHK MP Harutyun Pambukyan, Yerkrapah foundation.


Police chief Valeriy Osipyan gave a press conference.

He said 29 people are now identified and facing hooliganism charges in Ijevan logger clashes. https://armtimes.com/hy/article/166988

There was a 9% rise in overall recorded crime in 1H19. The share of crime against humans has decreased, while property crime share increased. The absolute number of heavy/medium physical harm crimes has decreased by approx 100, while 8 more murders were committed in the period.

Large contributor to crime rise were theft and bribery cases. Police believes the rise in recorded crime in the past year is also aided by citizens being more confident in the law enforcement and deciding to report a crime, which they otherwise wouldn't.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/982661.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/982656.html

88 of the 650 inmates who were pardoned last year, have committed in average of 2 crimes each, and are back in jail.

Jan-2019 vs Jan-2018 there were 1248 fewer prisoners, without counting those released by mass amnesty. Some of the crimes were committed by these folks.


Osipyan said they are still looking for a former politician and fugitive Vano Siradeghyan. Where is Vano? https://armtimes.com/hy/article/166986

He said Serj's fugitive nephew (shooting and stabbing case) Narek Sargsyan used his real name when he was last seen leaving Armenia last year. While in another country, he changed his name to Franklin Gonzalez. He is currently in a Czech jail, waiting for an extradition hearing. https://armtimes.com/hy/article/166971

Police believes the recent assassination of a thieve-in-law Masivtsi Andik was ordered by someone. Several apartments and vehicles were search. A few criminal world figures have been detained. Details later... https://armtimes.com/hy/article/166966

Osipyan says they are properly following court orders to prevent environmental activists from occupying Amulsar territory belonging to Lydian miner. There is a pending case against activists who recently tried to block the law enforcement from entering the mine.

(Earlier the court ordered the police to remove activists from Lydian's property in Amulsar, but they were allowed to stay on the nearby public road. This "loophole" allows them to shut down the entrance to Amulsar.)


In average, police officers earn 25% more than before. 336 officers received a combined 40mln grant for solving heavy crime cases.


They caught the idiots who were drifting their cars on a busy street. One of them is former police chief Alik Sargsyan's nephew.


-- https://shamshyan.com/hy/article/2019/07/24/1130759/

You are writing the letter ու wrong, says the Language Committee. The second bit must be in lower case if it's the first letter of the word, and should be upper character if the whole world is in caps.


(Who thought this was a good idea? How about we have a single character ու so we won't have to look for its bits and pieces all over the keyboard? One of the most commonly used letters, yet the single biggest pain in the neck since Mesrop Mashtotc forgetting to invent և օ ֆ and letting plebs struggle for one thousand years.)

The Defense Ministry has implemented a toll-free hotline that allows people to call and report various issues in the military about solider rights, things that negatively affect their service, complaints, suggestions. 85-01 and 85-03.


Remember the Turkish college boy who crossed the border last year, got arrested, then had his father come and pick him up? The father has just been arrested in Turkey as part of the ongoing political opposition crackdown by the Erdogan regime. The man is a pro-Kuridh HDP party official in his region.


Link to original report: https://www.reddit.com/r/armenia/comments/chdry4/news_anticorruption_jul242019_kocharyan_lawsuit/

2018 Daily Armenia Reports














2019 Daily Armenia Reports