In order to form an idea as to what terrible-extent illegal logging has been done in the forests of Ijevan, I present the dynamics of intensification of logging in about 800 hectares of forest in Ijevan during last year. Ayser Ghazaryan, the former Deputy Minister of Environment of Armenia, has written this and posted respective photos on Facebook.
He noted that the first satellite GIF imagery is the July 2018, the second is the July 2019, and the third is the July 2019 satellite imagery combined with a transparent map—with yellow borders—of the forestry, and the green numbers are the numbers of squares and forests.
Also, Ghazaryan posted the logging dynamics of the same forest in Ijevan in 2018-2019, but this time combined with optical, multispectral satellite imagery—in infrared, red, and green. He noted that here the aforesaid forest is mostly in dark red, the polygons with yellow borders are highlighted as examples where intensive logging was conducted, and some other homogeneous areas can also be identified to their color.
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan had touched upon the events that unrolled in Ijevan town last week.
“We will stop illegal logging with all determination,” he had written. “Those guilty of yesterday’s [July 17] events, as well as the organizers of illegal logging, shall be punished with severity.”
On the evening of July 17, numerous residents of Ijevan blocked the Armenia-Georgia interstate motorway in protest against the incumbent authorities’ tougher stance on illegal logging. A clash ensued between demonstrators and police. Subsequently, the police detained several people from their homes. The demonstrators argue that they are able to make a living solely by logging.