2021 July 20

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Contents

Daily news wrap-up

News - Jul/20/2021: Nakhijevan border shootout __ Putin & Aliyev meet __ New appointments: MOD, deputies, embassies __ Chess victory __ Artsakh needs construction workers __ French delegation __ Gold & Forex reserves __ Vzgo's failed "lightning rebellion" __ $30 for your vote __ the Future Armenian
by ar_david_hh


Your 9-minute Tuesday recap in 2263 words.

Azerbaijan resumes Nakhijevan border shelling / both sides have casualties /international response

Azeris earlier tried to build a new position in the furthest north-western Nakhijevan borders (next to Yeraskh village) but were blocked by the Armenian army's actions. Azeris responded with fire. Both sides sustained casualties. A ceasefire violation was also recorded on Gegharkunik borders near Kut.

Late last night Azeris resumed the fire with the use of various big and small-caliber weapons. The mayor of Yeraskh village Radik Oghikyan, while located in front lines, received a wound in the shoulder while organizing a team to extinguish fire caused by Azeri shelling (they used a 93mm "flamethrower" weapon). The mayor was transported to Yerevan where the doctors conducted a successful surgery.

Azeri army reported that its Senior Lieutenant Ramal Bahluloglu was wounded on the foot.

According to Yeraskh residents, the border position held by Armenians is on the Azeri border [there is usually a wide buffer zone], so Azeris have been trying to advance in this area.

Armenian MOD: We will not allow any change in the line of contact. Last night Azeris continued to use hand rifles until 2:00 am. Grenade launchers were no longer used. The shootout lasted for several hours.

HR Ombudsman: Azeri army's routine ceasefire violations near Yeraskh and other border settlements are a crime. [the Ombudsman visited the village to speak with locals]

French ambassador Lacôte: When Yeraskh can't sleep, Yerevan stays awake too.

U.S. embassy: The U.S. Embassy is concerned by incidents along the border between Armenia and Azerbaijan, most recently near Yeraskh​/Sadarak. We call on both sides to swiftly and peacefully de-escalate tensions and create space for the resumption of substantive negotiations.

Klaar, EU's rep. in South Caucasus: Deeply worrying developments continue on AM-AZ border. We urge for restraint and separation of forces & constructive engagement on border issues before new casualties are registered. EU stands ready to assist the sides.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058552.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058561.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058562.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058559.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058564.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058565.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058566.html https://twitter.com/ToivoKlaar/status/1417383019242008576 https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058602.html https://factor.am/395727.html https://youtu.be/igIcTOYUlOk https://www.facebook.com/usembarmenia/posts/10159525963352673 https://youtu.be/4cJ8Uztpuy8

army continues routine exercises

An expert group traveled to positions held by the 5th military unit to check the quality of engineering work in trenches.

The 1st Army Corps held shooting exercises.

The 4th Army Corps conducted military vehicle exercises in difficult terrains.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058635.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058638.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058642.html

new appointments and reshufflings / ambassadors and Ministers

Defense Minister Vagharshak Harutyunan will step down, per Pashinyan decree.

Deputy army chief of general staff Arshak Karapetsyan will step down. He will become the deputy Defense Minister.

The ruling "My Step" alliance leader Lilith Makunts, who is the third on the ruling party's ballot, will not be an MP in the upcoming new Parliament. It was earlier announced that she could be appointed as the ambassador to the U.S.

Ruling QP MP Ararat Mirzoyan will no longer be in Parliament. His job will likely go to current vice-president QP Alen Simonyan. As for Mirzoyan, he is expected to receive another job position in the government.

Armenia will have a new ambassador to UAE and Bahrain.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058593.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058614.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058620.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058630.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058581.html https://factor.am/395974.html

website that lists Azerbaijan's war crimes

Different articles are available in English, Russian, and Armenian.

https://war.karabakhrecords.info/en/

Putin and Aliyev met in Moscow

Putin to Aliyev: one of the most important issues remains the settlement of the situation in the region. I want to thank you for finding compromise solutions. They are always difficult, but if we want a resolution - and that's what we all want - then we must choose that path. So far we have been able to achieve that.

Putin's spokesman: this visit was for clarifying certain positions. No documents were signed.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058639.html

deputy Foreign Minister of Russia discussed the Karabakh conflict with OSCE Minsk Group

They spoke about the Nov 9 and Jan 11 trilateral statements.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058601.html

photos: Russian peacekeepers are using Orlan-10 and Fosport surveillance drones in Artsakh

https://mil.ru/russian_peacekeeping_forces/news/more.htm?id=12372899%40egNews

https://factor.am/395743.html

Artsakh construction volumes are so, there is a workforce shortage

... and even the brigades of workers coming from Armenia are not enough, according to the Russian outlet Kommersant.

Housing is being built for 30,000 IDPs with the financing of government, foundations, individual donors, and the All Armenia Fund. 2,500 units are in the works right now, with just as many planned in the near future.

Full: https://www.kommersant.ru/doc/4909258 https://factor.am/396114.html

high-ranking official from the French ruling party visits Armenia

Nathalie Loiseau chairs a French defense committee and represents the ruling party in the European Parliament. She visited the Tsitserbanakerd genocide memorial today and urged the "whole world to recognize it."

Sarkissian hosted Loiseau. The latter thanked France for assistance to develop Armenia, and said that Armenia needs constitutional reforms to strengthen democracy and better involve the Armenian diaspora.

Pashinyan hosted Loiseau and thanked her for the pro-Armenian stance in the European Parliament. She recently co-authored a resolution that urged Azerbaijan to release POWs, and for Turkey to recognize the 1915 Genocide.

Pashinyan spoke about strong AM-FR relations and recent meetings with Macron, Charles Michel, the 2.6 billion Eu aid, etc.

Loiseau congratulated Pashinyan on the election victory. "You have shown that democracy is your most important value. This is all the more important given the regional context [...] I will continue to be a friend of Armenia and Armenians in the European Parliament, like many other French parliamentarians."

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058600.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058611.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058640.html

gold and foreign exchange reserves held by EAEU bloc members

Russia $596b

Kazakhstan $36b

Uzbekistan $35b

Belarus $7.5b

Kyrgyzstan $2.7b

Armenia $2.6b

http://arka.am/en/news/economy/armenia_has_lowest_gold_and_forex_reserves_among_eeu_member_stats/

trial resumes for former opposition leader Vazgen Manukyan / "incited physical violence"

Manukyan was leading the former regime's movement after November 9. Amid chaos and threats, Manukyan said certain things that the prosecutors believe were a violation of Article 301 (public calls for forcefully overthrow the Constitutional order). They pressed charges on March 17.

It's about Manukyan telling his followers to be prepared to take over the power with a lightning rebellion. He did not comment on his words today, saying the court will figure out what his words meant.

On another occasion, Manukyan emphasized the importance for him to travel across Armenia to rally supporters, "so that one day, we can rise up and destroy everything. We are preparing for that day. Peaceful negotiations [with Pashinyan] will not help. We need force against force. The force is not 2,000 youth who break into buildings, it's the whole nation."

Manukyan's lawyer asked the court to lift the travel ban but the court decided to keep it. The next trial is in September.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058607.html https://www.reddit.com/r/armenia/comments/mfxr1c/mar292021_1_24000_vaccines_arrive_2_pashinyan/ https://youtu.be/PwqP_EE5ARE https://factor.am/395794.html https://factor.am/395854.html

$30 / prosecutors press more voter bribery charges on the suburbs of Serj stronghold Masis

Context in July 19 post; two employees of Serj's PU alliance were accused of bribing local residents. Today the authorities announced more charges relating to alleged bribery of 40 local residents.

Investigators said: V. Hovhannisyan was the head of the PU alliance campaign office in Noramarg settlement. He offered and gave $30 bribes to 40 voters with the assistance of subordinate N. Manukyan.

The chief transferred the $1080 bribery budget to the subordinate on June 16 to prepare the distribution.

The subordinate, in her turn, conspired with two other residents to help bribe the voters.

All four of them are charged with a felony. The leader is arrested. The others are told not to leave the country. The case is sent to prosecutors for court filing. //

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058626.html

update: Qarahunj (Syunik) mayor was arrested over allegedly pressuring residents to vote for Kocharyan-ARF

Today the prosecutors decided to "downgrade" her arrest to allow bail.

https://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/218980

update: Constitutional Court publishes the full text of the verdict that upheld the election results

jargon for bored people...

https://www.concourt.am/armenian/decisions/common/2021/pdf/sdv-1606.pdf

update: ruling party MP's brother claims self-defense in shooting incidence

Yesterday we learned that QP Khachatur Sukiasyan's brother was arrested after a fistfight escalated into a shooting in Yerevan. He shot a man in the foot before surrendering himself to the police station.

He claims it was in self-defense. The prosecutors are seeking "hooliganism and the use of weapon" charges.

https://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/218927 https://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/218919

hundreds of Western America dashnaks held an assembly

... to discuss their future plans. "The regional assembly reaffirmed its firm will to support the people of Armenia and Artsakh."

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058584.html

High Tech Ministry signed a cooperation memorandum with COAF SMART Center

COAF's self-description: our curriculum emphasizes novel teaching techniques, leveraging both project-based and action-based learning. The COAF SMART model is designed to be replicated throughout Armenia. //

The Center is located in Debet, Lori. The Minister paid a visit and said "this model is a future-oriented and promising investment in our education system. The Ministry will support the multiplication of such centers throughout Armenia."

The two spoke about high-speed internet access across Armenia and the need to improve infrastructure in rural areas. They traveled in Debet and learned about the installation of the settlement's first fiber-optic network, and other digitization programs.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058612.html

the FUTURE ARMENIAN project

On April 30 we learned that a group of prominent diasporan Armenians launched "The FUTURE ARMENIAN" project to tackle 15 issues to help strengthen Armenia. They've held multiple events since then. They held another one today.

Philanthropist Artur Alaverdyan: last time when we met, we had 10,000 supporters. Today it's 90,000. Let's discuss ideas and think.

Aram Bekchyan: There are programs to repatriate 50,000 families. They could be from Russia, U.S., and elsewhere. But we need the right conditions first. Let's discuss this. We don't have all the answers. The purpose of this movement is to discuss it together.

Aurora co-founder Ruben Vardanyan: we need a development model for Armenia. Don't wait for any miracle, savior, or any political party to change Armenia. The change starts with everyone changing their way of thinking. Many things cannot be done on a government level. They require changes in the way we think.

Moderna co-founder Afeyan: I met Pashinyan and spoke about The FUTURE ARMENIAN. He offered to develop cooperation mechanisms and to take part in some of the projects. I hope we'll be able to develop these mechanisms. We have a long record of successfully cooperating with governments.

More: https://youtu.be/yl2N15OTTJY https://youtu.be/CVHsWQdsd3A https://youtu.be/DXagEffyCZA https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058645.html https://youtu.be/1ggl3lcOFYM https://youtu.be/KJq2BT6Sh8s

Armenia will participate in Dubai Expo 2020 (delayed due to COVID)

Economy Ministry: Armenia will have its own pavilion in this largest expo of its kind, participated by 192 states. It's held once every five years and lasts half a year. The organizers expect 25 million visitors.

After negotiations, the UAE agreed to provide us an aid package and special conditions worth $1.5 million (free services and property).

The expo is about the cultural, educational, scientific, and economic heritage of states. There will be 11 topics presented by each state.

The location will be separated into three Districts: Sustainability, Mobility, and Opportunity. The Armenian pavilion is located in Opportunity District, which states "Witness how our lives and actions are interconnected in the Opportunity District. Meet the people worldwide who are transforming dreams and aspirations into the realities of tomorrow, and be empowered to shape the future by unlocking the potential within yourself." [why the fk do I have the impression this is from that Arnold Schwartzenegger movie about a human colony on Mars?]

Ministry continues...: Armenia will present its potential and investment opportunities, and help establish networking ties for the private sector. A 4-day "Made in Armenia" expo will present Armenian goods. There will be a special location for selling products. //

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058613.html https://www.expo2020dubai.com/en/understanding-expo/opportunity-district

COVID stats

6299 tested. 194 infected. 102 healed. 3 deaths. 3503 active.

https://factor.am/395647.html

14,000 Iranians visited Armenia just to get a COVID vaccine between Jun 22 - Jul 16

... according to Iranian customs agency. 10k via land, 4k via air.

https://www.panarmenian.net/arm/news/294426/

Vardenis (Gegharkunik) will have new irrigation and drainage canals on several streets

... as part of an infrastructure upgrade co-funded by federal and local authorities.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058583.html

athletes in Lchashen (Gegharkunik) will be able to train during the winter months

... after the installation of a new centralized heating system in the sports center, as part of a federal-local subsidy program.

Every winter they wait for "warm" days to be able to train.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058591.html

wrestler Sargis Begoyan wins bronze model in world youth championship

48kg category.

https://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/218975

soccer: Armenia's champion loses the match against Moldovans

Alashkert 0:1 Sheriff

The second game is next Tuesday in Moldova. It's for the UEFA Champions League qualification.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058641.html

chess competition between Parliament MPs and wounded soldiers

... was held in Yerevan today. The veterans won the tournament. Many of them suffer from PTSD. Various state agencies offered them training courses and desk jobs. Sergey Hambardzumyan says he will accept a position at IRS once he recovers.

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058603.html

Chess World Cup 2021: Armenia vs Azerbaijan

Young grandmaster Hayk Martirosyan played a 1:1 tie with Azerbaijan's top player Shakhriyar Mamedyarov. Martirosyan won with whites but lost with blacks.

The winner had to be chosen with two tie-breaker rapid matches, where Martirosyan defeated Mamedyarov 1.5-0.5. He won with blacks and tied with whites.

Martirosyan is #129 in the world ranking, while Mamedyarov is #6.

He advances to Round 4, where he will compete against Croatia's Brkic.

https://en.armradio.am/2021/07/20/fide-world-cup-armenias-haik-martirosyan-defeats-shakhriyar-mamedyarov-of-azerbaijan-proceeds-to-round-4/ https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058551.html https://sport.news.am/eng/news/123735/chess-world-cup-2021-hayk-m-martirosyan-shakhriyar-mamedyarov-to-compete-in-tie-break.html

today in history

1240: Gandzasar monastery is consecrated in Artsakh. It's located on Gandzasar mount, in the Mets Arank region of Mets Hayq's Artsakh Province.

1944: unsuccessful assassination attempt against Adolf Hitler

1969: Apollo 11 lands on the Moon

https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1058543.html

end of report

The accused are innocent unless proven guilty in the court of law, even if they "appear" guilty.

News archive: http://www.armeniapedia.org/wiki/Daily_Anti-Corruption_Reports

Donations: soldiers' families, humanitarian aid, US tax-deductible donation.


Link to original report and comments: https://www.reddit.com/r/armenia/comments/ooagfr/news_jul202021_nakhijevan_border_shootout_putin/

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