2019 November 27
Anti-Corruption & News TLDRs - Nov/27/2019 :: Dodi Gago vs German investor :: Armenian Genocide :: Azerbaijan :: Azeri army corruption :: Journalist exchange :: Nature protection :: SIS and MPs :: Employment :: etc.
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.
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving day. The annual All-Armenia charity telethon will launch from Armenia from now on, for the first time in 20 years.
This is the day when diasporan Armenians around the world will donate to help various projects in Armenia and Artsakh.
The main topic of this year is "Ես իմ անուշ Հայաստանի․ կենարար ջուր եւ արեւ համայնքներին" (water and sun for communities)
Archaeologists had earlier found a 2600 year old female warrior in the northern Lori region of Armenia. She was only 20 and died during a battle in Urartu.
There is a theory that ancient Greeks referred to these female fighters as Amazonians.
She had a higher status in the society and was buried with jewelry. She had strong muscles, probably an archer. Part of an archer bow penetrated her leg, but it was healed before her death.
Her bones had serious ax and sword wounds. Multiple enemies struck her during the battle.
(FYI: you can scroll down the article and click the English version of the article) https://armenpress.am/arm/news/996824.html
Update: Armenia and Azerbaijan exchanged journalist visits.
Last year an Azeri journalist from Turan outlet visited Armenia by himself. Armenian CivilNet outlet's chief host Tatul Hakobyan asked OSCE if he could visit Azerbaijan.
They told him to wait. In 2019, when OSCE invited Tatul to join a group, he was away in Europe and couldn't join. He was made aware of this exchange ahead of time but was asked to keep it secret.
Tatul Hakobyan says:
These types of visits were very common in the 90s and early 2000s. I personally visited several times. At the time, the govt didn't have to organize it, they were only providing security. The 2001 visit was organized by an Armenian media club.
The AM-AZ connections were intense back in the days. Societies and the NGOs were able to better communicate.
In the 90s, there was an instance in which Azeris and Karabakh simply opened the part of their border to allow an Armenian journalist visit Azerbaijan, instead of using a transit country like we law last week.
When Ilham Aliyev took the office in 2003, one of the first thing he did was urging Azeri journalists and NGOs not to meet Armenians. A small group of Azeri journalists defied the ban and faced a retaliation.
An Azeri journalist complained yesterday that this latest exchange was more about govt setting an agenda and telling what journalists can do, instead of letting them act freely. Tatul Hakobyan shares this view.
Journalist Edgar Elbakyan says Azeris want peace, but not at the cost of recognizing Artsakh independence. "They don't want the current peace to continue while Artsakh isn't part of Azerbaijan. They aren't ready for any compromise either. Azerbaijan is preparing for war."
Journalist Davit Alaverdyan says that in Azerbaijan, due to state propaganda, people believe that Artsakh population is hungry to the point that in a few years they themselves will ask Azerbaijan for help.
"Confess or Die'– BBC article gives horror details from state sanctioned torture in Azerbaijani army".
Aliyev regime tortured dozens of people with an attempt to get a confession that they are Armenian spies. The story begun few years ago.
Russian Original https://www.bbc.com/russian/features-50431983
English tldr https://armenpress.am/eng/news/996757.html
An Azeri army Colonel published videos in which he criticized the Defense Ministry administration, led by Zakir Hasanov, for "corruption, embezzlement and lawlessness in the army", and urged president Aliyev to take action.
Colonel Mansimzadeh accused Minister Zakir Hasanov and several others of personally being involved in corruption.
Says the rankings in the army are for sale.
Soldiers give bribes to avoid front-line service.
Medical services are bad.
In 2014, a military police official also asked Aliyev to do something about Zakir Hasanov, accusing the latter of corruption. At the time, Hazanov was accused of appointing his relatives to positions and promoting them after becoming a Minister, corruption, buying mansions with shady funds, not giving soldiers the apartments that they are supposed to receive by law.
Deputy PM Tigran Avinyan met US ambassador Lynne and spoke about reforms. US supports the ongoing judicial and anti corruption reforms. The ambassador welcomed Armenia's participation in regional security programs.
Turkey blocked NATO's attempt to strengthen the security in eastern Europe, in a move that benefits Russia.
Turkey says they'll lift their "veto" if NATO provides more support to Turkey in their northern-Syria invasion.
Germany defended Turkey's membership in NATO, saying it's complicated, but they need Turkey in the alliance. Germany also said they need US's help with the continent's defense.
Germany also agreed to increase its financial contributions towards NATO by 2024 in response to Trump's criticism. NATO members also plan other changes to increase the number of battalions after Turmp's criticism of them not doing enough.
French Macron called NATO "brain dead" and criticized the political divisions within the alliance. This promoted him to receive criticism from several NATO countries.
NATO will hold a meeting to discuss the disagreements.
Former SOC chief Davit Sanasaryan petitioned the court to terminate his case by arguing over some laws. The court today decided not to end the case, and not to send it to Constitutional Court either, because the court didn't find a conflict between the laws in question.
Sanasaryan is charged with allowing his employees to unfairly and illegally help a specific company to win medical licenses. He was appointed by Pashinyan last year, and replaced after being charged.
HHK MP Farmanyan's sister was charged with embezzling money from university students. LHK boss Marukyan and BHK Naira Zohrabyan gave a personal assurance she will remain in Armenia if freed under bail. She was released.
She then fled the country.
The two MPs were invited and questioned by SIS. The agency wants the MPs to keep their promise of making sure the suspect doesn't escape. Tghe MPs say they can't do anything, they don't know where she is.
MP Marukyan says he will never give a personal assurance to free anyone again.
US District of Columbia, which includes the capital Washington DC, has recognized the Armenian Genocide.
49 US states and The House have recognized it so far.
Kotayk governor's office and Charentsavan city are suing the owner of an abandoned park to take back the management of the park.
The firm bought a 25-year lease in 2005 but hasn't kept the area tidy.
This year the annual New Year's market will be held in Yerevan-2800 Park, while the Northern Avenue will host something about Christmas trees.
A group of university students want to meet the EPH University's acting-rector Gegham Gevorgyan to discuss the upcoming education reforms about language/history.
The rector has agreed to meet. He also said, "There shouldn't be a law to require all students to take specific classes. I think even if the govt-requirement is removed, most students would still be required to take those classes." (University can require classes even if govt doesn't)
Nature Ministry and investigators busted an illegal mining of volcanic Tuff stone, done since July-2019. 46mln in damages, and damages to land were uncovered. Felony case is launched.
The govt is negotiating to replace the existing Alaverdi copper factory with a new one. "The current one is designed poorly, is inefficient, and pollutes too much."
15 environmental activists, some of whom earlier accused Pashinyan of taking bribes from Amulsar miner Lydian, are suing deputy PM Tigran Avinyan for an alleged defamation.
Lydian earlier presented information claiming some of the people, who shut down the road leading to the mine, were aided by a competitor miner.
Tigran Avinyan mentioned this during one of his recent speeches.
The 15 activists asked Avinyan if he was referring to them, Avinyan didn't respond. They are suing Avinyan to have him confirm or reject it in court.
74% of the registered unemployed are women. Labor Ministry organized a workshop in Yerevan to help people get a job. 70 employers came to recruit. Some interviews happened on the spot. >1,000 available jobs.
The number of registered unemployed people, those who seek a job through govt registry, is down by 14% compared to last year.
66% of all job seekers are unemployed, the rest want a new/more job.
17% of registered unemployed are young. 6% have disabilities.
The initiative has so far helped 2700 people to find a job.
Actor Gayane Aslamazyan's now-former husband and the latter' sister smuggled 40kg cocaine between US and Australia, by hiding the batch inside various appliances between 2014-2016.
$3.5mln worth pablos. They'll pay hundreds of thousands in penalties. He is facing 10 years, while the sister is facing 20 years. Both admitted the guilt.
A German investor is in a legal battle with BHK boss Gagik Tsarukyan (Dodi Gago).
In 2006, the German firm purchased 1,500 shares (or 3.2%) of Ararat Winery. Factory's 89% of the shares belonged to Gago.
In 2008 the shareholder board held a meeting and decided to consolidate the shares from 47,000 shares to only 20 shares.
As a result, those who owned fewer shares, ended up having fractions of the new shares, and were forced to sell them to the large shareholder, who happened to be Gago. (Մավրոդին քք ա կերել սրա դեմը)
From the forced share sales, the Firm received only 15mln Drams because that's how the Board decided to calculate things. This means according to the calculations, the whole business was worth only 470mln Drams ($870k). The real price of the factory is up to $300mln, argues the Firm.
The Firm accuses Gago of purposely and illegally taking shares away from the smaller shareholders.
Firm took Gago to court and lost. 💅
In 2014, the Firm asked ECHR to intervene. The European court begun the hearings in 2018.
The Firm contacted the law enforcement after the 2018 revolution, but the prosecutors did not open a felony investigation. The Firm is challenging prosecutor's decision in a court.
Meanwhile, the Firm contacted IRS to notify them that Gago is allegedly purposely lowering his business' value to avoid taxes.
IRS is currently waiting for the court's verdict to see if Prosecutors will be required to open a felony case.
Armenian National Museum near the Republic Square will have an air conditioning system and moisture control. 18-20 Celsius temperature will help protect the 25,000 artifacts. Govt issued a 602mln fund.
Roman legionnaire Henrikh Mkhitaryan is back from a lengthy injury vacation. He'll play against Basaksehir.
Link to original report and comments: https://www.reddit.com/r/armenia/comments/e2n8yt/anticorruption_news_tldrs_nov272019_dodi_gago_vs/
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