From Jermuk: We Are Not Disappointed, But Angry with Ministry Conclusion
Jermuk residents negatively accepted the fact that Nature Protection Ministry didn’t include Jermuk in the list of communities affected by Amoulsar gold mine development project. Fore over a year Jermuk residents are concerned with this issue and they officially informed Nature Protection Ministry about their concerns and they pointed out that the border of the resort zone, the center of which is Jermuk passes 2-3 km away from the mine. Nevertheless, the Ministry didn’t take into account the residents’ opinion when approving the positive opinion on Amoulsar project and presented substantiations. Amoulsar project is implemented by Lydian International Company as represented by local Geoteam Company with the financial support of International Finance Corporation–IFC and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, EBRD.
Vazgen Galstyan, “Center for Jermuk Development” NGO, “We are not just disappointed, but angry about this decision. The positive opinion of the expertise doesn’t mean this project is ideal, but that methods of our fight (for Jermuk) were very gentle… I accuse myself of that, as we didn’t achieve what we wanted, while the hazards are huge, and it’s impermissible to present everything so ideal as Geoteam does… I don’t accuse the company, but the government, as the company does its business and makes use of the blunders…”
Gevorg Hovhannisyan, candidate to the Aldermen’s Council in Jermuk: Jermuk shouldn’t be just in the list of affected communities, but it should be in the top. This is the pearl of the country, you couldn’t find any similar place in the whole region… Why it wasn’t included? I think, it’s something intentional…”
Narek Mirzoyan, Jermuk resident, “I will fight for not allowing the mine to be developed. If this occurs, toxic substances will reach us. Anyway, I am against it. It’s such a pity that there are people in Jermuk who are for this or have no idea about it. We should all unite and oppose to this mine. We just want to live in a clean town, without noise and dust and without toxic substances…”
Makedon Aleksanyan, Jermuk resident, “Mined are not new for here. Still in 1830 Voskoboynikov (well-known Russian geologist) spoke about our mines in “Russian Calendar” journal. He spoke about lead and you know that lead and uranium are always together. Such a powerful country as the Soviet Union didn’t develop this mine, as many springs are located nearby. 40 years ago the Gosstroy made a decision imposed a ban on explosion works in Jermuk. An this ban was enforced…Gevorg Hovhannisyan, “Eventually, we should live. They will come and go, but we will stay here.”