YEREVAN. – We have stated a year ago that we must determinedly stop the process of unlawful cutting down of trees, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan noted at Thursday’s Cabinet session of the government of Armenia. He stated this referring to Wednesday evening’s events in Ijevan where clashes between protesters and police took place over unlawful logging.
“There may be an impression that everyone in Tavush, Lori [provinces] is engaged in cutting wood and selling [it]; that’s not so, at all” the PM said. “That’s a very narrow circle of people who for many years have created some leverage, a network—with its corrupt links, and today we are dealing with that network.
“There will be no unlawful compromise, and I put the issue before the law enforcement systems (...). There will be no compromise with an unlawful action. No one can speak with the government with blackmail, and bringing this to fruition is the task of the legal system.”
Also, Pashinyan said people should realize that they can get richer by not cutting down the forests rather than cutting them down, and added that those who have done this dirty job—by cutting down trees continuously for 30 years in Armenia—continue to be poor.
“Nothing has changed in their lives,” Nikol Pashinyan stated. “This means we are going in the wrong way.”