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Armenian News - NEWS.am presents a daily digest of Armenia-related top news:

·      Amulsar gold mine protests were staged outside Armenia presidential residence in Yerevan. Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan on Monday met with Jermuk town residents—and at the official residence of the President of Armenia, 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 as earlier the Investigative Committee of Armenia has publicized the results of the comprehensive audit report which was commissioned to the 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.

Armenian PM presented the process for half an hour, said that the government was trying to clarify the situation but presented the report and the facts in a distorted form that the conclusion of the Investigative Committee allegedly proves that the risks are manageable and this will not affect the environment and Jermuk, but in reality everything is written there exactly the opposite, said activist Anna Shahnazaryan.

Clashes also occurred between the protesters and police and as a result of clashes 6 persons have been detained.

One of the detained activist Gegham Adyan has been hospitalized, said the Deputy Director of Surb Grigor Lusavorich Medical Center Artak Manukyan.

According to Manukyan, he has a neurotic reaction and a heart rhythm disorder.

According to Armenian PM’s spokesperson, Vladimir Karapetyan, there are no grounds at the moment to halt the operation of Amulsar.

“I don’t believe the whole procedure is over; we will wait for the final,” he added.

If there is at least 0.1 percent doubt that Jermuk and Lake Sevan will be devastated by operation of the Amulsar gold mine, the gold mine will not be operated. This is what deputy of the My Step faction of the National Assembly Alen Simonyan , in his turn, said during a briefing with journalists in front of the office of the Civil Contract Party today.

·      Catholicos of the Armenian Church Catholicosate of the Great House of Cilicia of the Armenian Apostolic Church, Aram I, presented his view on the Istanbul Convention.

According to him, no matter who the author is, no matter how important it is, as Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia, he is absolutely against any document that may harm the Armenian family, the spiritual, moral, national values system.

Secondly, as he noted, any document that is of such a sensitive nature needs to be discussed.

Thirdly, this document condemns all forms of violence against women and we all agree, he said adding that “we have publicly condemned any abuses against the Armenian woman.”

According to him, “we have repeatedly drawn the attention of the Armenian authorities to the fact that Armenia as a state can sometimes find itself in opposition to respect and protection of human rights on the one hand, and to remain committed to our national, moral and spiritual values on the other hand.”

·      The Armenian government will allocate additional AMD 2.1 billion (approx. US$4,429,000) for the country’s armed forces, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan wrote on his Facebook.

“The Armenia government will allocate funds for additional 2.1-billion drams to improve the conditions of combat duty of soldiers, including to secure running drinking water to combat positions,” he wrote.

·      An Armenian citizen was killed and eight more injured as a result of an accident in Russia’s Novosibirsk region, the press service of the Main Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in the Novosibirsk Region reported.

The accident occurred on Sunday evening as the driver lost control and flew into the ditch.

Police officers began a preliminary investigation into this accident, the circumstances and causes of the road accident are being established.

·      According to the information received from the Office of the Prosecutor General of Russia, it is not possible to grant the petition of the Prosecutor General’s Office of Armenia to extradite Mihran Poghosyan—Armenia’s Compulsory Enforcement Service of Judicial Orders former head and ex-MP—from Russia to Armenia for criminal prosecution, Arevik Khachatryan, head of the public relations division of the Prosecutor General’s Office of Armenia said in a statement.

As per this statement, the granting of the aforesaid petition was not considered possible based on the provisions of Article 19 of the Convention on Legal Assistance and Legal Relations in Civil, Family and Criminal Matters.

Mihran Poghosyan is charged in Armenia with involvement in an offshore scandal and money laundering.

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