The citizens fighting against Amulsar gold mining project have held a protest demonstration in front of the government building today. The objective of this protest demonstration is 'to blow off all the myths and fears connected with the mines, to support the government to confirm the will of the citizens and the decision adopted by the inspection body on the project to undergo the expert assessment once again.'
The participants of the protest demonstration were Jermuk community residents from Vayots Dzor Region, the residents of Lake-Sevan littoral communities from Gegharkounik Region, environmentalists and civil activists. They had symbolic balloons with them – green and red. The protesters considered 'responsible mining', 'arbitration court', 'economic growth', 'international standards' to be myths and 'blowed them off' with red balloons. The protesters sent messages 'strict inspection', 'strict supervision', 'global justice', 'water' and 'environmental law' with green balloons.
The protesters chanted, 'Amulsar without mine, Nikol swallow Lydian. Green and clean Armenia.'
'We, Jermuk residents, have been watching over Amulsar roads for over 80 days so as not to carry out any operations there. We want to preserve our town, our water and our generation. We shouldn't permit the implementation of this project. We will fight till the very end to achieve our goal,' Jermuk community resident Edmond Aghabekyan said.
'Amulsar is the largest mine which will be opened in the center of Armenia. Its impact will spread in all directions – Vayots Dzor, Sevan, Syunik Region, Arpa and Vorotan river basins. Who will manage and eliminate the dangers for over 50 years, install relevant stations and serve water-cleaning stations? Whether it is feasible technically and in other regards,' All-Armenian Environmental Front member Levon Galstyan said.
The protesters noted that RA Nature Protection and Soil Inspection body, in parallel with other violations detected in Amulsar area in the course of inspections, detected red-listed' Acantholimon caryophyllaceum Boiss' plant species and 'Apollo' butterfly species. 'If 'Apollo' butterfly species really exist in the area of Amulsar, the Armenian legislation imperatively bans any mining operations there,' Levon Galstyan mentioned.
Environmentalist Mariam Sukhudyan was taking part in the protest demonstration in the form of 'Apollo' butterfly, who has been out of street protest demonstrations for a long time. Today she is next to Amulsar protectors to back them.
'Mining is incompatible with Jermuk resort area, which will turn into a dead mining zone. It is impossible for these both to co-exist and not influence each other. During his visit to Jermuk PM Nikol Pashinyan said he wouldn't allow if it were during his cabinet,' Mariam Sukhudyan said.
'We are here to address a message to the government that the government bravely supports the Armenian legislation and not be subject to international pressures,' Armenian Environmental Front member Anna Shahnazaryan said.
Gegharkounik-based 'Territorial Development and Research Center' NGO President Satik Badeyan said, 'Amulsar is threatening also Sevan, and we, Sevan residents, are demanding to stop Amulsar mining. If Amulsar mine doesn't exist over time, we will always have Sevan, if we protect it in a correct manner. All our efforts must be focused on saving Sevan.'
Amulsar project impacted Gndevaz villager, journalist Tehmine Yenoqyan called for all to attend the court hearing on Amulsar case at RA Administrative Court at 10:30 on 7 September.
September 06, 2018 at 18:13