Astghadzor Community residents, Gegharkounik Region, have sent an application-letter sealed with 32 signatures to RA Chief Prosecutor Arthur Davtyan with a request to recover their violated rights to water. The letter says, “
Dear Mr. Prosecutor,
We would like to inform that Astghadzor Village was founded in the current Gegharkounik region in the 1828-1830s: one of the main reasons for its establishment was Astghadzor River, its water has had essential significance for the activities of the population and was used both for drinking and irrigation. Later Zolaqar Community has also started making use of the Astghadzor River. Over time, the water in the river has decreased because of climate change, while over the recent years the water of four natural springs with 23 lps capacity has completely been transferred to Zolaqar Community (RA Nature Protection Ministry permit №000078 dated on 15.04.2016) as a result of the projects “Community Agricultural Resource Management and Competitiveness” and “Support to Infrastructure and Rural Funding”. For this reason, Astghadzor community has been deprived of water, as a result of which serious problems have emerged between both communities.
In the course of project design and implementation, the interests of Astghadzor community haven’t been taken into consideration and the rights of the residents to access to water have been violated as there haven’t been any discussions and public hearings held.
All the permits of water supply issued to Zolaqar Community from Astghadzor River and springs have been issued with the violations of the law and based on the false information provided by Zolaqar Community. The initial letters and demand don’t comply with the final outcomes.
Based on the urgency and significance of this matter and for the purpose of preventing non-desirable and unpredictable consequences, we are requesting to carry out an investigation to reveal all illegal actions and abuses, which will enable Astghadzor community to have their own water back.”
14:41 November 13, 2018