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Armenian News - NEWS.am presents a daily digest of Armenia-related top news as of 31.10.2019:

·       The Armenian Investigative Committee is investigating the circumstances of the HIV infection of a little girl, IC’s press service reported.

According to the grandmother of the girl, she had a periodic fever from August to October 11. The child was hospitalized and diagnosed with HIV. Meanwhile, neither the child until this moment, nor the parents had HIV.

A criminal case has been instituted and a number of examinations have been appointed in this regard.

·       Armenian government made a decision today to appoint Ararat Grigoryan as Vayots Dzor Province governor.

Armenian Minister of Territorial Administration and Infrastructure, Suren Papikyan, presented the decision to the government.

Vayots Dzor ex-governor Trdat Sargsyan submitted his resignation in October as his name is linked to the September 17 incident in Yeghegnadzor town, during which the governor's assistant beat the lieutenant colonel. Sargsyan denies his involvement in the incident and insists he was at home at the time.

Lieutenant Colonel Ara Mkhitaryan was taken to hospital, where he underwent an emergency operation. He was in coma until October 3, and now is still in a critical condition.

·       Leading U.S. senators urged the passage of Armenian Genocide bill in the Senate after the U.S. House adopted a similar resolution, Washington Post reported.

“Turks don’t like to hear it because the truth hurts. And, if we don’t stand up to one genocide, we won’t stand up to any,” said Senate Minority Leader Chuch Schumer.

By the way, Maryland Senator Chris Van Hollen also called for the resolution passage.

“It’s time for the Senate to do the same. Acknowledging history is the first step towards not repeating it,” he tweeted. 

·       Two prominent Israeli politicians on both sides of the political aisle independently have also called for Jerusalem to acknowledge the Armenian Genocide, Times of Israel reported. 

“Turkey cannot be allowed to intimidate the world into denying genocide. I will continue to fight for Israeli recognition of the Armenian Genocide,” Blue and White co-leader Yair Lapid tweeted. 

Former Likud minister MK Gideon Sa’ar also called for recognition, tweeting on Wednesday.

“I welcome the moral and principled stance of the US House of Representatives in recognizing the mass killing of #Armenians 100 years ago as #genocide. Israel should make similarly clear its recognition of this terrible atrocity,” he said. 

·       A joint meeting of the standing parliamentary commissions during a preliminary discussion of the draft state budget for 2020 was held on Thursday.

The office of the High Commissioner for Diaspora Affairs will get AMD 775 million in 2020, said High Commissioner for Diaspora Affairs Zareh Sinanyan.

According to him, relations between Armenia and the Diaspora are in their infancy.

The appropriations make up only 0.04% of the state budget, which, according to Sinanyan, is clearly not enough.

What comes to the Armenian government's meeting, it approved today a 36.5mm-euro loan from the Asian Development Bank, and a 40mn-euro loan from the German KfW bank.

The Armenian government also made a decision to allocate funds to the administrations of Ararat, Armavir, Lori, Aragatsotn, and Vayots Dzor Provinces for subsidy programs.

Armenian Minister of Territorial Administration and Infrastructure has briefed on asphalting works. According to Suren Papikyan, they intend to complete on November 15, the 330 kms and they will probably achieve something more.

Deputy PM Tigran Avinyan added that if we add asphalting works with subsidy programs, we will exceed 500 km in asphalting. Armenian PM Nikol Pashinyan, in his turn, noted that asphalting of 500km of roads without subsidy plans is planned for next year, while with the subsidy plans, they will have to go beyond 700km.

Meanwhile, the government also made a decision to liquidate a number of boarding schools and an orphanage in Armenia. According to Minister of Labor and Social Affairs Zaruhi Batoyan, this is done to organize further care for children in need of care in a near-family environment.

Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sports Arayik Harutyunyan, in his turn, noted that AMD 179 billion 459 million are allocated for the implementation of 21 programs and 176 events in 2020.

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