2020 June 9
- 1 Anti-Corruption Daily
- 2 Lake Ardenis is recovering
- 3 Loan for Metsamor nuke
- 4 monday
- 5 Rape conviction / Old dirt resurfaces about BHK chief Tsarukyan
- 6 Big battle brewing / QP vs BHK's alliance
- 7 LTP back in the news
- 8 Law enforcement appointments
- 9 Phone call leak
- 10 COVID stats
- 11 Hospital bed shortage alleviated… for now
- 12 COVID enforcement
- 13 Update: U.S. defunds Armenian website
- 14 progress towards safety
- 15 bolola in Baku
- 16 Donations
- 17 judicial system overload
- 18 seismic retrofit
- 19 update: Who saved how much in 2019?
- 20 former and current cops busted / 256mln in contracts
- 21 Jobs for prisoners / Food and trees
- 22 new roads
- 23 free apartments
Jun/9/2020 News: (1) Job for prisoners (2) Lake gets clean (3) Nuclear loan (4) QP & BHK deal blows. Civil society responds (5) How overloaded are courts? (6) Public is listening. Fewer COVID violations (7) Bed shortage gone (8) Conspiracist defunded (9) Cop's scheme busted (10) Seismic retrofit (11
Lake Ardenis is recovering
The pollution problem is being solved in Ardenis mini-lake. For years, people complained about trashy water. The nearby pig farm's wastewater was being dumped in the lake.
In 2019, two farms were sanctioned for illegal exploitation of water, and for not using wastewater filtering tech. They recently installed special wells to trap the dirt.
More work will be done this summer.
Loan for Metsamor nuke
~2014 Armenian govt asked Russia for a $300mln loan to renovate the Metsamor nuclear plant. Part of the work was done. $200mln has been distributed.
In 2019 the experts asked for more time to fix the pending problems, so Armenia asked Russia to prolong the state loan accordingly and to delay some repayment deadlines.
"We held a long discussion about this. It yielded no results," said Minister Papikyan.
Either Russia refused to extend it, or the Armenian refused it. Armenia will use its funds to finish the renovation.
Rape conviction / Old dirt resurfaces about BHK chief Tsarukyan
Gago and 3 of his accomplices met two Russian women in Dvin restaurant in 1979. At 23:00 they drove women to a night club in Abovyan.
At 01:30 they drove them to the church Getargel "to show the architecture", but instead shoved them in the nearby abandoned building and raped them.
The 4 then robbed the women of 513 Rubles in jewelry before dumping them on the street at 05:00. A few weeks later they sold the jewelry to a witness.
Women called the police. The 4 friends were detained. To help the detained friends, Gago's co-villagers found the women's address, went there, and asked them to withdraw the rape allegations, but the women refused.
Initially, both women reported being raped. After meeting the 4 friends' co-villagers, one of the women changed her story during the court trial. The court found that the victim was coerced to change her story, and decided to take into account her initial pre-co-villager-meeting testimony.
Forensics and medical experts examined the women's bodies and took blood samples from the crime scene, and concluded that the rape allegations were credible.
During the trial, Gago claimed he didn't rape anyone but he did see how one of his friends was raping one of the women. The suspects began pointing fingers.
The court took into account that the 4 had no prior convictions and were drunk. Two got 9 years, the other two 7. The jewelry was returned to women.
BHK says Gago was later "acquitted in 1997" and that the story was an extortion plot by the women.
Big battle brewing / QP vs BHK's alliance
Earlier Pashinyan's office accused Dodi Gago of making a "big noise" because he knows there are felony investigations against him, so he feels threatened.
Big noise = Gago wants to create a united front against Pashinyan, which could include ARF, ex-NSS chief Vanetsyan, ex-HHK officials, Robik's people, etc.
Some of Gago's critics accuse him of becoming Putin's man. Earlier BHK chose Putin's Yedinaya Rossiya (United Russia) party as its sister-party. BHK will hold talks with Russia-linked ex-NSS chief Vanetsyan's new "Hayreniq" Party, among other parties.
BHK MP Abovyan said: if the govt put all the effort they put against Gago to solve the economic problems and unemployment, that'd be great. It's unethical to resurface Gago's past as a political attack. We're holding discussions with concerned political parties.
Informed Citizens NGO chief Daniel Ionessyan believes the bridge between QP and BHK isn't burned yet, based on BHK's history of fighting with a govt then forgetting it. "The bridges are already burned with pro-HHK parties like Arthur Vanetsyan's Hayreniq"
"Armenia needs a functional opposition. At least the govt does something that the public wants; what are former regime's members doing? They sit and complain about govt touching the money they stole, and try to present it as political persecution."
"LHK isn't tied to HHK but they made many mistakes. Their ratings took a hit. Armenia needs opposition with an ideology that isn't serving someone's personal interests."
"QP might split and become its own opposition. It's a young unstable party. They won't split as long as HHK is active."
Several artists joined the bolola. Mikael Poghosyan, Edward Hambardzumyan and Sergey Danielyan spoke against BHK's "attempt to bring back the old corrupt system", calling it a war against people.
LTP back in the news
PastInfo outlet published rumors that Pashinyan, while still infected with COVID, secretly met 1st president Levon Ter-Petrosyan a few days ago. The outlet claimed Argishti Qyaramyan's appointment as NSS chief was a result of that meeting. (PM has been advancing Qyaramyan in the system for months, however.)
PM's office denied the rumor calling it fake news, saying last time PM met LTP in 2018.
Law enforcement appointments
Yesterday Pashinyan appointed young Argishti Qayramyan as NSS chief. Today he presented Qyaramyan during an NSS meeting, saying the agency needs both progress and internal stability.
He also presented the new police chief and said the uniform must be worn with pride and responsibility.
Phone call leak
Investigative Services chief says the 2018's infamous phone call "leak" between SIS chief and ex-NSS chief Vanetsyan is very close to being solved.
They're waiting for foreign countries to send certain information before they can conclude the investigation. "We've been waiting for 9 months... No individual is charged."
+350 infected. +352 healed. +8 deaths. 8933 active. 4451 healed.
Healthcare Minister Torosyan: the number of healed has spiked because we began counting the healed patients who healed while outside of hospitals. Don't let these numbers reduce your guards.
1 man returned from Russia to Artsakh and was placed on mandatory quarantine at home. He infected 4 of his family members. Total 77 quarantined in Artsakh. Artsakh will require masks in close areas.
Hospital bed shortage alleviated… for now
Minister Torosyan: after a recent bed expansion, there are no long waiting lines anymore. There is an occasional shortage in resuscitation rooms.
350 more beds will be ready soon, including ICUs. We'll expand the capacity by 15%.
No need to use the large Hamalir sports-musical center yet, thanks to more hospitals expanding their beds. The reason Hamalir wasn't used to house 200 patients who recently had to wait in line, is because those patients needed more intense care which only a hospital could provide.
Shirak's Kanach Kirch restaurant ignored the safety twice and got penalized again.
Several popular obyekts in Gyumri were shut down. One of the managers complained about a rough attitude by the auditors. https://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/189768
16 night clubs were closed for ignoring safety (COVID-safety, that is). https://factor.am/257835.html
Update: U.S. defunds Armenian website
...medmedia.am that was spreading COVID fake news and vaccine conspiracy theories.
The U.S. Ambassador Lynne Tracey condemned any misinformation.
progress towards safety
Audits in Malatia district reveal that shop owners are more likely to respect safety. 10% are being penalized now, vs 33% a month ago.
Pre-school auditors say after the first round of enforcement, the facilities significantly reduced the violations.
Pashinyan said: we're seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. Don't let your guard down. [he thanked a German-Armenia doctor for flying to Armenia for help.]
bolola in Baku
Ilham Aliyev announced a 2-day curfew in several cities. It caught people off-guard. This resulted in many unmasked residents in Baku to rush to the stores for bread and other products.
Mass arrests by Baku police. Apartment complex residents began throwing trash at them.
The UN will donate $1mln to help the Armenian economy and low-income residents impacted by COVID, as part of the "Recover Better Fund" initiative.
Georgia-based donors donated 17 more lung ventilators and 3k masks.
The City of Smile foundation collected 17mln in donations online to help kids with cancer.
judicial system overload
Q: Trials last for years. To accelerate them, do we need more judges or do we need more people working in judge's office so they process paperwork faster?
A: Neither. We need to reduce the number of lawsuits being sent to courts. 80% of cases come from banks/financial institutes. If we handle these cases outside of courts [arbitration] that would reduce the load.
170k civil cases were filed in 2019. There were 170k civil cases by the end of 2019. So far in 2020 we already received 117k new cases. Short-term solution is to hire more judges.
Every judge handles 1,700 cases per year. Investigators handle 60 felony cases. Prosecutors handle 120 cases.
In 2015 the govt signed an $88mln loan agreement with Asian Development Bank. It'll include seismic retrofit or re-building of 46 schools and a safer environment for 19k students.
Armenia's seismic regulations for construction will be reviewed. A new guide and the list of problems will be created.
Progress: Yerevan's 153rd and 7th schools were renovated this year. Seven more in progress. Dozens more by 2020.
update: Who saved how much in 2019?
Prime Minister 4.4bln, Parliament 0.4bln, President 0.04bln, Constitutional Court 0.04bln, Justice Ministry 0.9bln, Judicial 0.6bln, Investigative Committee 0.3bln.
https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1017834.html ; https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1017850.html ; https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1017855.html ; https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1017857.html ; https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1017859.html ; https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1017901.html ; https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1017925.html
former and current cops busted / 256mln in contracts
SIS says: In 2017 the govt decided to replace the "Lusashen" company that was tasked with drawing traffic lanes and repairing lights in Yerevan.
When "Lusashen" director learned about his fate, he and another police officer decided to create a new company "UkrInvest" to try and win the new contract.
Meanwhile, the police began discussions about what the new company's requirements should be. They instructed official K.K. to create a plan about the needed repairs and contract requirements. Since K.K. was inexperienced, he asked the aforementioned "Lusashen" director and the latter's policeman buddy for help.
Lusashen's director, who created a new UkrInvest company, wrote the contract requirements in a way to secure a win for his UkrInvest.
The time came to hold the auction for the contract. The requirements, written by UkrInvest, were so strict, that even UkrInvest couldn't qualify, so they had to collude with another police official to close the eye on the problems. (dumb mother****ers 😂)
UkrInvest won 1.6bln in contracts. They did a poor job during the repairs, bought cheaper items, cut the corners illegally. Meanwhile, official K.K., who was supposed to audit them, pretended everything was fine.
4 officials are arrested. 1 is told not to fly to Russia. A felony case is launched.
Jobs for prisoners / Food and trees
Justice Minister Badasyan:
In the past, prisoners were only baking bread. The prices of these goods weren't right, so the foundation accumulated 200mln in debt. We lowered it by 40mln in 2019.
We plan to give culinary lessons to prisoners so they can bake a wider variety of food.
They'll also plant baby-trees, which will be transported elsewhere in the ready-form.
Govt has lots of paperwork that needs to be digitized with scanners. Prisoners could help. They'll be paid.
Right now only 10 out of 2150 prisoners do baking and other non-arts related work. We hope to improve the number.
Yeghvard-Ashtarak road's 13km section is being renovated and ashphalt-ed. It bypasses Yerevan and connects two provinces.
"No need to get in stuck in Yerevan traffic while traveling from Ashtarak to Sevan anymore."
"It's important for local tourism... This road has broken many cars in the past 10-15 years."
…were given to more refugees who fled Azerbaijan during the war. This is part of the 2.1bln package to house >185 families.
Link to original report and comments: https://www.reddit.com/r/armenia/comments/gzuube/jun92020_news_1_job_for_prisoners_2_lake_gets/
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.
|2018 Daily Armenia Reports|
|2019 Daily Armenia Reports|
|2020 Daily Armenia Reports|