2019 November 20
Anti-Corruption & News TLDRs - Nov/20/2019 :: Judge gets 7 years :: Liska & a mayor wanted by SIS :: IRS & Guns :: Foreign affairs :: Cattle :: Pashinyan _ Resignation call _ Azeri blogger :: Azeri govt _ Georgia borders :: Russian media :: Serj _ EPP :: Economy :: HayPost :: Education Ministry
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.
Christian Bale, Kim Kardashian, Anjela Safaryan and Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad junkie) participated in the launch of a center at UCLA dedicated to "The Promise" Armenian genocide movie that was released in 2017.
The producer of the film, doctor Eric Esrailian, donated $20mln from the movie's revenues to launch the center.
Update: SPAYKA large import/export firm earlier complained about Russia not allowing large cheese trucks to enter Russia. They brought the product back to Armenia. Today they were allowed to enter Russia after some inspections.
IRS wants the govt to issue a permission for high ranking IRS officials, investigators, anti-contraband investigators, to have the right to carry a weapon. Total of 400 weapons.
🚨 TIL: IRS criminal investigators in US carry firearms. 🚨
Govt will spend 2.5bln in 2020 to establish an electronic tagging system for cattle. It's about quality, safety, monitoring their movement, tracking disease. A pilot program was conducted earlier but wasn't implemented state-wide.
Tag: farming, farmer
Russian Moskovskij Komsomolets journalist to Pashinyan: some people view you as 1st president Levon Ter-Petrosyan's prodigy, his reincarnation, his "continuation". What influence did he have on you?
Pashinyan: Look at me carefully. Do I really look like someone else's reincarnation? My public life begun when I was 16. Political life begun in 2006. LTP returned 1 years later to prepare for the 2008 elections. I was working in his campaign at the time. My political ties with LTP ended in 2012. The breakup begun in 2011. I went my own way with different ideas and plans. After being elected as PM, LTP came to my office saying he has an "important information" about Artsakh, which I already knew because I was briefed about the ongiing Artsakh negotiations immediately after becoming a PM. That was the first meeting with him since 2012.
Pashinyan to Russian journalists: I don't plan to apply any negotiation style used by the previous presidents. Any solution must be acceptable to Armenian people, Artsakh people, and Azeri people. I'm the first Armenian leader to mention the latter. I was criticized at home for "worrying to much about Azeri people", but I think if we want to have a lasting peace, the solution must satisfy all sides. I invite the leaders of Artsakh, Azerbaijan and OSCE to work around this idea.
Bellingcat investigators earlier published an evidence presented by Armenian investigators, showing that Azerbaijan invaded few hundred hectares of Georgian land, then bragged about improving its positions over Armenia in the north. (A further investigation revealed Armenians had bigger gains.)
To cover up the invasion evidence, Azeri state-media tampered with Google Earth map data and the border line to mislead their viewers with false info.
Investigators: we were expecting something more sophisticated from them.
Pashinyan went to Italy and met Armenians in a church. An Azeri blogger also went there and asked Pashinyan, "a democratic leader", to end the Karabakh war. The blogger (who is accused of being an Azeri intel agent - unverified) wanted the lands to be "liberated" so he could visit and see the Azeri settlements again.
Blogger: If I visit those settlements, will I be able to leave safely?
Pashinyan: Yes, I assure you. See, you've entered an Armenian church surrounded by Armenians and asked the Armenian PM a question. The opposite wouldn't be possible, an Armenian couldn't enter and ask such a question to Azerbaijani president.
The blogger also spoke about Khojali events. Pashinyan reminded that even people within Azerbaijan, including former president, believed that the opposition extremists were to blame for civilians being caught up in the events.
PM then spoke about how Karabakh got its independence legally, and how Azerbaijan launched a war in response.
During the church meeting, a concerned attendee urged Pashinyan to resign because his govt "is spreading hatred" and pushing Armenia and Artsakh "on the brink of a collapse" with having no agenda on the table. (crowd interrupted her with "we don't agree")
Who launched the hatred propaganda? If the public hates the former regime, is it our fault? The revolution was peaceful and based on love.
When they say we don't have Artsakh agenda, what exactly was THEIR agenda? To give Meghri to Azerbaijan? To give 7 Artsakh regions to Azerbaijan in exchange for peace? When Serj said "Aghdam isn't our homeland", is that their plan?
When you say I'm destroying the govt apparatus, if you mean the corruption, then yes, we broke its spine.
Every last stolen penny will be recovered (crowd applauds). Some of the most corrupt ones hid here in Italy (referring to Serj son-in-law media/mining magnate Mikael Minasyan). They shouldn't have a hope to get away. Armenian justice will reach them. I don't care in which Vatican basement they hide (Mikael Minasyan was an ambassador to Vatican). We'll grab them from the neck and drag them to courts. However, we preach love today. We're in a church right now.
End of PM speech.
PM and 1st lady went to La Scala, met Milano mayor.
(spice of the day award)
Minasyan's lengthy response ("Vatican's basements only contain the remains of Petros apostle"): https://news.am/arm/news/545588.html
PM: it's all about love
PM: right after we slam a few oligarch's face on the asphalt 👌
Serj Sargsyan was invited to participate in European EPP party conference. It's a "sister-party" with HHK. Their current leaders have close ties.
In his speech, Serj mentioned a peaceful revolution in 2018. He said did everything to make it peaceful.
Serj: New leaders have done nothing "revolutionary" in internal and external politics. Democracy is in danger in Armenia (💅). Judicial system isn't free. Political persecutions. Opposition activists are persecuted. Intolerance and hatred at record high. I left last year so my people could build a better country, but I'm now accused of yielding my seat to populists. Current Artsakh peace process concerns me. Azerbaijan still arms itself, they should remember that Artsakh will never be part of Azerbaijan. I started the EA-ARM comprehensive cooperation process earlier, please ratify it.
End of Serj's 5-minute speech.
No one saw this one coming...
Former Syunik governor HHK Surik "Liska" Khachatryan is now wanted by the SIS for alleged abuse of power, forgery, instructing others to "waste state resources" (steals pipes for his brother) between 2011-2012, also for rigging land auction in 2016 to sell it to a friend for a cheap price.
Surik Khachatryan and Noravan mayor Lernik are charged with 3 felonies.
European Bank for Reconstruction and Development about the Armenian economy:
Anti-corruption and fair business environment are the prerequisites for Armenia's future development. Armenia managed to keep a steady 6% GDP growth in 2019, despite some mining and agriculture decline. Due to mining decline, the exports also declined.
Despite this, the currency remained stable and the inflation declined from 2.5% to 1.7%. Armenian govt managed to improve the fiscal situation by lowering the debt-to-GDP ratio from 60% to 55.7%.
EU values the ongoing tax reforms in Armenia. The structural govt changes and the promotion of high tech have the potential to keep the steady economic growth.
For comparison, GDP growth and inflation in Georgia are 4.5% and 4% respectively, while in Azerbaijan it's 2.8% and 2.8%.
A judge has been sentenced to 7 years, and a lawyer to 2 years, for bribery and cover-up.
A Kotayk judge Gagik Heboyan and his lawyer friend Vahagn Danielyan were arrested earlier this year for demanding and taking a bribe from a person, in exchange for making a verdict in their favor.
HFF (soccer federation) Internal Audit chief Mesrop Arakelyan, who is also Pashinyan's adviser, has harsh words about the state of Armenian soccer:
Every time we are missing something to proceed to the finals. It'll take a long time to reach that goal. We need more local stadiums, a better national stadium, promotion of soccer among kids, stricter limits on foreign players (only 2 Armenian strikers among 20), govt programs, replacement of Henrikh Mkhitaryan as team leader because he couldn't care less about the team (oooof), fixing some organizational issues with EAEU legionnaire system.
Context: Armenia is officially out of Euro 2020 after losing to Italy 1:9.
Long-time former Armenian soccer goalkeeper Roman Berizovsky will train the Russian Sochi club for this season.
SPINS THE WHEEL... who is going to be today?
Prosecutors in Lori will recover an illegally embezzled public park. Report says:
Vanadzor former mayor signed an illegal order in 2007 to give "Artsakh Park" to a private firm. This case didn't fit the felony criteria, thus no charges will be pressed. Prosecutors have asked the new Vanadzor mayor to undo the changes.
You know who DOES face felony charges? Former police chief Vladimir Gasparyan's brother Karen.
During 2018 Vardavar festivites, a kid watered Karen's car. Karen didn't like it and allegedly assaulted the child after illegally blocking the road. It escalated into an argument with the kid's father. It then escalated with Karen allegedly making death threats and beating him up. There were witnesses.
Police says they have enough info to charge him with a felony hooliganism.
Parliament amended a law to prevent businesses from hiding safety issues from inspectors. Inspectors will no longer need to give a 3-day early warning before a visit.
Parliament amended the law to remove HayPost postal service, and Energiampex, from the privatization list. Both were deemed as "too important" by the govt. The privatization process begun few years back.
Education Minister signed an order to create a Student Council adjacent to the Ministry. Earlier he met school students and they asked for the creation of the council in order to have a better voice.
Minister Harutyunyan met some students to celebrate the 30th anniversary of a convention that protects children.
105 additional provincial schools will have projectors and interactive boards, 90 schools to get 303 lab equipment, half of all schools to get engineering labs by the end of 2020, 22 new schools to be built in villages next year.
by 2025, Armenia will have an inclusive education system to integrate kids with various disabilities. Ministry will find kids who dropped out of school due to health and poverty reasons, and return them to school.
Last month the World Bank predicted Armenia to finish 2019 with a 5.5% GDP growth.
Govt predicted a 4.9% growth. Central bank now predicts a 7.1% economic growth for this year, while Finance Minister predicts 7%.
Govt says GDP grew 7.9% in 3Q2019 vs 3Q2018.
ա դե սպանիք թողիք արա ամեն մեկը մի թիվ ա կրակում այ ախպեր եկեք պռոստը աբրենք տենանք ինչա ըլնում հերիքա նապաստակ խփեք մեղկ են անասունները
A south Korean firm KOIKA donated 62mln worth communication equipment to the Parliament. COnference equipment, translators, etc. Parliament used to rent such equipment.
Nature Ministry caught 60,000 baby ishkhan fish from rivers and dumped them in lake Sevan. (how rude)
One of those endangered leopards that I often post a video of, has attacked a hunter/farmer.
A man in Yenoqavan went to check on his 150 pigs and noticed that a few were killed and scattered around. While walking along the hill, the leopard ambushed him from above. His lip was ripped and the fist sustained serious injuries during a 5-minute defense (pretty long fight). Medics gave him antibiotics and stitches.
Leopard was 85kg, 1 meters, white-grey belly. It migrated to and lived in the area for at least 6 month.
Hunters held a meeting. Last time they saw a leopard in Yenoqavan in 1960s. The main threat is against domestic animals that often roam around the area, and possibly people who go in these remote areas for picking things up.
Hunters don't want to shoot it (illegal). They plan to contact nature protectors so they can come install cameras, locate the animal, and transfer it to larger Khosrov Forests. The problem is once the animal knows the conditions in Yenoqavan are better in the winter and there is more food, it could escape Khosrov and return.
(Poll: should people be allowed to shoot the animal in self-defense, if people themselves go into the forest to feed their herd?)
Eurovision Kid-Edition. Top-3 contestants by the number of YouTube views so far::
Viki Gabor of Poland, 3.7mln
Tatianna Mejentseva of Russia, 1mln.
Karina Ignatyan of Armenia, 800k views.
The finale is in November 24th.
Link to original report and comments: https://www.reddit.com/r/armenia/comments/dz9hjb/anticorruption_news_tldrs_nov202019_judge_gets_7/
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