January 19
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YEREVAN. – National Assembly (NA) of Armenia Vice President Alen Simonyan, who is also a member of the majority My Step faction in the NA, has not formed a personal position on whether the Amulsar gold mine should resume operations; he noted about this at a briefing Monday with reporters.

Simonyan said, however, that his professional knowledge and information are not enough for him to express a position on this matter.

“During the meeting [with the PM] it was everyone’s concern that we would not make a mistake,” he added, noting that if there is a chance of making a mistake on this matter, the Armenian government will not risk it.

“If there’s a little chance [of a risk], forget about Amulsar, forget about that organization, too,” Simonyan said. “What’s important is the Republic of Armenia, the state of our environmental level.”

The parliament vice-speaker concluded that no international organization can exert pressure on the Armenian government.

As reported earlier, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan on Monday met with Jermuk town residents and environmentalists to discuss the matter of whether the Amulsar gold mine should resume operations.  Subsequently, Pashinyan met with members of the majority My Step faction in parliament, and regarding the same matter.

The Investigative Committee of Armenia has publicized the results of the comprehensive audit report which was commissioned to the Advanced Resources Development (ELARD) Lebanese consultancy firm, and regarding any likelihood of environmental risks from the exploitation of the Amulsar gold-bearing quartzite mine of Armenia.

And as a result of this audit report, 16 points were noted in its conclusion, and which, if maintained, would make this mine’s environmental risks manageable.

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