2020 September 23

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Daily news and anti-corruption report

Sep/23/2020 news: \\ education reforms: Armenian language \\ liberated Anvakh outpost \\ MFAs clash \\ Armenia-Saudi relations \\ job & salary stats \\ real estate grows \\ EU sends $ \\ BHK officials \\ Amulsar activists \\ police & cadastre reforms \\ mask ads \\ Yerevan vs illegal construction
by ar_david_hh


"the importance of the newly liberated Anvakh outpost"

The govt released a video: in July, without a single shot, Armenian soldiers took the [Anvakh] position that was under Azeri control. It has long been a big security threat to nearby residents of Armenian Movses village. Although this position is within Armenia, Azeris attacked it but were thrown back.

Why is Baku taking the loss of this position so painfully?

First. This has left an important Azeri outpost on nearby Mt. Kharadash vulnerable because the only road that leads to it is under Armenian observation; it's right next to the new Armenian position.

This Azeri outpost on Mt. Karadash, which is now isolated, is very important for Azerbaijan because it's the tallest point that oversees several regions in Azeri Tovuz province, and Armenian Chinari village.

Second. There is a growing nationalist movement in Azerbaijan, and since Aliyev couldn't retake the lost position, it damages his reputation. The Azeri govt has fallen in their own trap that they set by making militaristic threats for years.

https://youtu.be/u-afISbc2vA

https://factor.am/285974.html

Azeri media is accused of word game / MFA Lavrov

Armenian MFA says: // Russian MFA Lavrov made a "standard" comment about the Karabakh negotiations, the 5 regions, etc. Azeri media twisted his words and presented them in a one-sided way. //

Russian MFA later told reporters to read their direct quote instead of its interpretation by a third party [Azerbaijan].

https://factor.am/286099.html , https://factor.am/286136.html

Armenophobia in Turkish newspapers

Hrant Dink foundation examined articles written by 500 Turkish newspapers in 2019. They found 5,515 instances of hate speech towards 80 minorities.

Armenians were the primary target with 803 instances, followed by Syrians with 760, Greeks with 754.

Yeni Akit, Yeniçağ Diriliş Postası were the worst offenders.

https://www.azatutyun.am/a/30853923.html

will the relations with Saudi Arabia normalize? / Signals sent / Middle East expert talks Turkey-Saudi-Armenia relations / Salman's Vision 2030

Azerbaijan, Turkey, Yemen, and... Saudi Arabia? These are the Asian counties without diplomatic relations with Armenia. Saudis are among those who won't befriend Armenia due to the Artsakh conflict for the sole reason that Azerbaijan is a Muslim state.

However, Saudis sent congratulations to Armenia on Independence Day on Monday. At first King Salman, then the Defense Minister. They wished "progress and prosperity" to Armenian people.

This is the second time they've done so. The first message was in 2018. The mutual trade remains low, however, at "few hundred thousand dollars a year."

--

Economist and Gulf states expert Minas Hanskehean explains: there is a significant and sharp shift in Saudi foreign affairs in favor of Armenia. There is a geopolitical confrontation between Turkey and Saudi. Erdogan wants to revive Ottoman "rules" and present himself as the Sunni leader, but Saudis don't like this.

Saudis had good relations with Qatar, then Turkey sent soldiers to Qatar.

When I was teaching economics to Saudi students in Riyadh in 2015, at the time, Turkey was viewed as a great, successful, and a model state. Then it all changed in front of my eyes. Riyadh's mayor directly instructed Sheikhs not to invest in Turkey because "Turkey is robbing you on daily basis." The most popular state-run newspapers would print anti-Turkish articles daily.

--

This isn't the only reason why Saudis want to normalize relations with Armenia now. It's part of their new strategy to make new friends, including in the Caucasus. They subsidized tourism to Georgia; it would cost Saudi citizens as little as $300 to travel there.

Saudis will celebrate their national day on September 23rd. Armenia should not only send congratulations but also an invitation for Saudi MFA or the Prince to visit Armenia.

The Armenian diaspora is very small; around 300 people. Mostly migrated from Syria, Lebanon, other Gulf states, and a very few gold experts and teachers from Armenia.

--

There is rapid social progress in the country. Prince Muhammad bin Salman wants to change the public mentality. It wasn't just allowing women to drive that they have done lately. It's part of their "Vision 2030" which also envisions Arabia without oil.

They want to dedicate land size of Armenia to develop tourism. They spend astronomical sums to import food, but our products aren't in their market. We should improve relations and establish a trade office in Riyadh.

https://www.civilnet.am/news/2020/09/22/Սաուդյան-Արաբիան-փոխում-է-Հայաստանի-հանդեպ-նախկին-քաղաքականությունը/395710

https://www.civilnet.am/news/2020/09/22/Սաուդյան-Արաբիան-երկրորդ-անգամ-շնորհավորեց-Հայաստանի-Անկախության-տոնը/395681

Tags: #SaudiArabia

China's new embassy in Armenia

"China wants to strengthen relations with Armenia," said president Sarkissian who was invited to the newly built Chinese embassy, which is the largest in the region. He discussed technology and science cooperation with China.

https://youtu.be/Gb_J47DI_z8?t=60

Photos: https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028521.html

U.S. company wants to build a global center for technology solutions in Armenia

High-Tech Minister Arshakyan met the American SADA Systems founder Hovik Safoyan, who wants to utilize Armenian tech talent. Details about the project will be revealed soon.

"This is like fresh air, a new approach that has not existed before. The government sends a signal that Armenia is not a country for charity, but a center for creating new companies and opportunities through mutually beneficial cooperation," said the founder.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028520.html

how post-Soviet dictators prepare their sons as next leaders

Russian blogger Varlamov made a video about how dictators of Belarus, Azerbaijan, etc. involve their sons in politics and slowly prep them as their successors.

The video mentions how BKH leader Gagik Tsarukyan gave 4 white lions as a gift to Nikolay Lukashenko (son of Alexander Lukashenko), how Ilham Aliyev changed Azerbaijani law to promote his family's power and how he "advertises" his son Heydar, how Tajikistan's dictator's son was recently elected as the Parliament speaker, etc.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZG0h0q76YA

speaking of Gagik Tsarukyan...

His "voter buying and financial crimes" trial was supposed to be today but he didn't show up "despite being notified". The judge could have continued the trial without him but he chose to postpone it until September 25th.

(There is a big opposition rally on October 8th and the ruling QP party earlier accused Tsarukyan of trying to match the rally date with his trial for more "impact".)

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028516.html

BHK MP Naira Zohrabyan's interview w/Russian outlet

Lragir writes: // BHK MP Zohrabyan is complaining that "Vestnik Kavkaza" Russian-language outlet twisted her words. She had to call them to demand a correction. "Is Zohrabyan even aware of this outlet's anti-Armenian record?"

In the interview, the MP also told the outlet that it's the Pashinyan administration who caused a deadlock in the Karabakh peace process and that it has no vision for resolving the conflict. This was actively used as propaganda by Azeri media. //

https://www.lragir.am/2020/09/23/580702/

police arrests environmental activists after fight

Police report says: // we got a call about a big fight in Gndevaz (not far from Amulsar, where Lydian wants to mine gold). The environmental Activists berated miners who expressed willingness to mine in Amulsar. Mamas were cussed.

Both sides gathered near Gndevaz to "talk". It escalated into a 40-minute physical and verbal fight.

One of the Activists then threw a rock at the oncoming car's windshield and broke it. His friends followed suit. Items were gathered as evidence. Three Activists are under arrest. Stay calm and respect others' rights. //

https://factor.am/285924.html

journalists criticize a court ruling / "bad precedence"

A group of media outlets: // Lori TV reporter was assaulted in 2017 while documenting how construction crews were laying asphalt under the rain.

The court verdict to acquit the suspects [due to lack of evidence and statue of limitation] is disappointing. They had twisted the journalists' arms, punched her, and deleted the footage. This verdict sets a bad precedence. //

The journalist will appeal the verdict.

https://armtimes.com/hy/article/196417

https://factor.am/285963.html

Armenian State University of Economics board

... decided to suspend classes until their acting-rector Diana Galoyan is officially approved by the govt as a permanent rector.

The previous rector was forced to resign after an Education Ministry agency found plagiarism in his doctoral dissertation. His replacement, Diana Galoyan, was also caught with plagiarism, but another Education Ministry agency overruled those plagiarism findings to give her a green light.

Her approval process hasn't been finalized yet. The university wants it done ASAP because they like her and "she is apolitical and independent."

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028544.html

police reforms

Recently the govt passed a bill to create a new police division with better-trained officers, better equipment, uniform, etc.

Someone has to teach those recruits. The future teachers are currently being taught how to teach the recruits. They are being aided by the U.S., EU, UN, and OSCE.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028542.html

real estate market is reviving

Property transactions dropped during the pandemic's uncertainty and hardship. Looks like it's active again.

Cadastre Committee chief: +6.3% YoY property transactions in August. The lifting of physical restrictions helped the rise. +39% in rural areas. +7% in provincial cities. Yerevan had fewer transactions, however. The prices are -1%.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028530.html

reforming the online property database system

Cadastre Committee will revamp the website and provide easier access to property locations. The street naming scheme will abide by the same rule so you won't come across a difficulty with finding "Khachatur Abovyan" but not "K. Abovyan".

More: https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028545.html

COVID stats

+2256 tested. +220 infected. +350 healed. 268322 tested. 3617 active.

Artsakh president's spokesman David Babayan is infected.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028499.html , https://armtimes.com/hy/article/196404

mask-promoting ads

The govt has purchased ad space on 40 billboards for 1 month to display ads that promote the wearing of a mask.

https://news.am/arm/news/603710.html

Norq Hospital employees to be rewarded

Norq infections hospital played a major role against COVID. They didn't receive special rewards on September 21st, unlike some of their colleagues. They sent a complaint letter to the govt.

The govt responded saying over 100 Norq Infections doctors will soon receive the awards, in addition to 12 who got it earlier.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028533.html , https://factor.am/285909.html

Artsakh sends gifts to the U.S.

Medical products made in Artsakh were donated to the Chevy Chase surgical center in Los Angeles, which has a history of helping the Artsakh population.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028539.html

Asian Development bank will provide $2m aid

... against the COVID fight.

https://factor.am/286126.html

Europe will provide $35m aid

... to reform the judicial system.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028575.html

Europe will give another $35m aid

This one is for overcoming economic difficulties caused by COVID.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028577.html

IRS provides job and wage numbers

There were 618,000 taxpaying jobs as of August, which is up 5,000 from last month, and up 13,400 from last year.

Salary-per-job-position went from $390/mo to $420/mo.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028538.html

Yerevan is being sued by ex-oligarch Lfik

Mayor Marutyan has been recently forcing ex-officials to free public lands that they "illegally occupied" with "illegal construction".

Ex-HHK businessman Samvel "Lfik Samo" Aleksanyan is now suing the capital to cancel one such decision that affects his structure on Շրջանային փողոց.

https://factor.am/285981.html

new bill could end the legalization of bootleg roof extensions

Those disgusting-looking things that people build on their apartment complex building roofs for "extra room"... currently they can be legalized.

A draft bill by Justice Ministry could keep them illegal.

Interview with an architect: https://armtimes.com/hy/article/196250

education reforms / Armenian language

The opposition ARF, BHK, HHK, Hayreniq are against the upcoming education reforms and have accused the Education Ministry of anti-Armenian conduct and "destroying traditional values, Armenian language, History, etc."

Education Ministry: // the proposed reform will increase Armenian Language class hours from 650 to 718 in Elementary, from 850 to 863 in Middle, and from 500 to 571 in High school. //

The reform bill is still open for suggestions on the govt website.

https://www.e-draft.am/projects/2560/about

More about the bill: https://armtimes.com/hy/article/196356

Armenian Language & Armenology classes

... are now being subsidized by the Education Ministry in twice as many foreign educational institutes, per 2019 reforms.

10 schools and universities in 8 countries are receiving financing to teach Armenian language, history, and culture.

The first-ever joint Armenology research was subsidized with two European institutes.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028498.html

birth registration reforms / less runaround for parents

The Justice Ministry reformed the law about issuing a birth certificate. Beginning in March, seven birth clinics enrolled in a new program to establish one unified office on their premises that will provide several services such as birth certificate, child aid enrollment, paternity certificate, etc.

The program will expand in provinces soon. It has already helped 3.7k out of 5.3k babies born in Yerevan since March.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028491.html

Le Dîner de Cons / now in theaters near you

Armenian-French producer Francis Veber created movie classics such as Dinner With Idiot (The Dinner Game), Խաղալիքը, Ձախորդները, Հայրիկները.

On the scale of 0-10, zero is the chance you haven't seen at least one of them. But why not watch a performance in person?

Vanadzor's drama theater will perform The Dinner With Idiot, directed by Sargis Manukyan. He believes the public needs some comedy after the pandemic.

More: https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1028492.html

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francis_Veber

--

You've read 2105 words.


Link to original report and comments: https://www.reddit.com/r/armenia/comments/iyh0j5/sep232020_news_education_reforms_armenian/

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. Helpful overview of Armenia's media ownership and leanings.


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