hetq.am, Seda Ghukasyan
Armenia has allocated $300,000 to hire a team of international experts to assess the environmental risks if the Amulsar gold mine project is allowed to proceed as planned.
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan made the statement today during a parliamentary session assessing the government’s performance in 2018.
Former Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Artur Grigoryan, now a Prosperous Armenia faction MP, raised the question about the future of Amulsar and other mines in Armenia.
Grigoryan asked about the government’s position on Amulsar given press rumors that Lydian Armenia, a subsidiary of the Anglo-American firm Lydian International and the mine’s operator, has taken the matter to the courts.
Pashinyan responded that Armenia does not have anything to fear.
“There is this sentiment in our press that, look out, Lydian has gone to the international court and that we’ve had it. Let them file. How defenseless do we feel regarding the international court?” Pashinyan said.
The Armenian prime minister said the position of his government on Amulsar is clear. It will be based on the results issued by the international team of experts.
For the past nine months, local residents and environmental activists have blockaded roads leading to Amulsar, preventing any work on the mine.
The project, given the green light by the Serzh Sargsyan administration, remains on hold.
15:55 March 29, 2019