Today, at about 10:00 a.m., Garni residents blocked Garni-Yerevan highway and demanded to stop the implementation of “Qaghtsrashen Gravity Irrigation System” program.
Garni residents keep on insisting this program will hurt the population of Garni Gorge and “Khosrov Forest” State Reserve. The residents opened the road only after two hours. As Garni resident Arusyak Ayvazyan told EcoLur in her phone talk with EcoLur, “It’s already several times since public discussions have been held in our community: we are opposing to this program, but our opinions are not taken into consideration. The rural administration has given its consent for the implementation of the project thus becoming an obedient servant of the authorities, whereas the village head and the Aldermen’s Council must listen to the voice of the community. We don’t want any more discussion, it’s enough of it. If our demand is not fulfilled, we are ready to take more drastic measures,” Garni resident Arusyak Ayvazyan told EcoLur.
Reminder: The project plans to take water from the Azat River in pipes for the irrigation of Aygestan, Berdik, Getazat, Deghzut, Hnaberd, Mrganush, Narek,Nerqin Dvin, Norashen, Vardashen, Verin Dvin and Qaghtsrashen communities. The project says that 0.85 m3/sec water will be left in the river as environmental flow. While Garni has 600 ha of non-irrigated agricultural land areas, the irrigation of which hasn’t been ensured because of their location in the high zones or because of desertification processes.
The other land areas of agricultural significance in Garni are located in semi-desert area.
“The World Bank representative has arrived here and he told us he is going to report to the bank that the community residents are opposing to this program and won’t allow its implementation,” Arusyak Ayvazyan said.
Qaghtsrashen gravity irrigation project will be constructed with World-bank funded “Improvement of Irrigation System” project. The liability for the project bears the project implementer – State Committee on Water Industry.
15:04 December 21, 2015