December 06
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A consultation was held Monday in the Armenian government chaired by Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, during which the humanitarian aid programs and further steps for the Armenians who were forcibly displaced from Nagorno Karabakh were discussed, the PM’s office informed. 

Summarizing the discussions, the Prime Minister noted. "Dear colleagues, we discussed the process of providing humanitarian support to our sisters and brothers who were forcibly displaced from Nagorno Karabakh, the work done and what to do next. First of all, I would like to thank the Humanitarian Center, which worked under the coordination of Deputy Prime Minister Tigran Khachatryan, all the Cabinet members, departments, non-governmental organizations, local self-government bodies, regional administrations, volunteers, for organizing the reception and urgent accommodation of our compatriots who were forcibly displaced from Nagorno Karabakh at the appropriate level.

“Of course, it is understandable that not everything was perfect in those crisis conditions, naturally, there will be some drawbacks, but in general, I think both the public reaction, our observations, and the fact that, in fact, we don't have an extreme crisis situation anywhere, it was the most important support, a crisis situation in humanitarian terms, apart from what is already a crisis in itself, we don't have a more aggravated situation than that."

Referring to the medium-term tasks, Nikol Pashinyan noted that the most important decision among them is to provide monetary support for the basic needs of our forcibly displaced brothers and sisters. 

"You know that a decision was made and it was announced that each forcibly displaced person from Nagorno-Karabakh, this refers to both children and adults, will be given a one-time monetary support of 100,000 AMD per person. We have a task to bring that support to our brothers and sisters as quickly as possible. We also need their support in this matter, and I want to ask that our forcibly displaced brothers and sisters, those who do not have bank or card accounts, should approach the nearest, most convenient bank and open a card account there in order to receive a bank card later", said the Prime Minister, adding that, of course, getting a bank card may take some time, but the accounts will be opened quickly, and the Government will transfer 100 thousand AMD to those accounts at once, and people will already have access to them using their passports.

“And for those who have bank cards, the Government will transfer the money to the accounts and cards in the coming week. "Of course we know that there are a large number of people who do not have documents. In such cases, it is necessary to obtain a relevant reference from the Unified Social Service, and through this reference it will be possible to have a bank account, card account, or in some other way the money will be available to our forcibly displaced sisters, brothers and children. In the case of children, of course, their data will be attached to their mothers' names and the mothers will receive the children's money in their accounts as well.

“The next decision we made is about accommodation, housing support. We have decided that each forcibly displaced person will be given 40,000 AMD as compensation for housing expenses, plus 10,000 AMD for utility expenses. It is very important that our forcibly displaced brothers and sisters approach the bank and open accounts as soon as possible to be able to make use of this program, so that we can transfer the money as soon as possible.

“But even before the transfer of money, we can actually record that, for example, in the case of a family of 5, in October they will receive 750,000 AMD of support from the state, the government. Also, I think that with this money they can also carry out certain actions. In particular, those who are in temporary accommodation should start looking for rental apartments or residential premises. Of course, the local self-government bodies, regional administrations are also instructed to support them in this matter. It is very important that our many volunteers can make it so that potential tenants and providers of residential premises for rent meet each other and reach agreements," said the Prime Minister.

Nikol Pashinyan also highlighted the solution to the problem of ensuring the employment of our brothers and sisters forcibly displaced from Nagorno Karabakh. 

"We are also taking measures so that, for example, specialists in the field of general education are involved, employed in the field of general education, in schools, workers in the health sector are employed in the field of health care. It is also very important that ministries actively disseminate information about vacancies.

“Of course, there are certain hiring procedures, tenders, etc., these procedures will not be nullified, but on the other hand, we will simplify as much as possible so that existing educators have the opportunity to get hired with simplified procedures, it also applies to healthcare professionals, and other fields as well. Appropriate instructions have been given in this regard," said the Prime Minister.

At today's meeting, the issue of involving our compatriots in the vacant positions in the contractor companies engaged in the implementation of state capital investments was also touched upon. 

"We will establish contact and collect information about their demand for vacancies, and we will also distribute this information during the broadcasts of the humanitarian center. This is an important moment, because if, for example, a citizen forcibly displaced from Nagorno Karabakh sees, let's say, there is a vacancy for a teacher in a settlement of Shirak region, and he can be employed in that place, this information should be delivered to him as soon as possible, because he has already to plan to rent a residential area or apartment in that settlement, etc.

“We have to do everything to help people to spend those 750 thousand, or 1.5 million AMD in the case of a family of 10, effectively, because the problem is not only having money, it is also a problem to spend that money effectively. In particular, if a person is to be settled in X village of Shirak Province and is currently located, for example, in a settlement of Kotayk Province, he should also plan when spending this money. That's why, I think, the humanitarian center, its public communication should work very actively in these matters, so that we can support people in this matter as much as possible.

“Not to mention that other issues arise there, the issue of the child's school, in that case it would be more reasonable to immediately take the child to the school of the settlement where they should live for at least the next 6 months, so that the children are not subjected to double stress. Of course, the problem of students should be solved in the same way, so that they are integrated into our university system, that is, their education process is not interrupted. Also, we must take measures to provide as much support as possible in the education process, to promote high progress," said Nikol Pashinyan.

The next important problem, according to the Prime Minister, concerns the large number of pensioners forcibly displaced from Nagorno Karabakh. 

"The good news is that most of them have bank cards and we will not have much difficulty in accessing them while supporting them. Financially, our approach is that they continue to receive their pensions in the Republic of Armenia. Here, however, we have a purely legal issue, linked with their forcibly displaced and refugee status. Our approach is that we will transfer the money and solve the issue of this money as soon as possible. If by then we have final solutions to legal issues, it is very good, if we do not have final solutions, we will ensure the minimum social needs of people, we will solve legal problems at the same time, without depriving our compatriots of access to any support.

“Summing up, let me say that the most important issue today is the following. Our compatriots forcibly displaced from Nagorno-Karabakh should open bank accounts in the nearest banks. The Central Bank has already discussed with the banks that these accounts should be opened free of charge and as soon as possible. Of course, we also have to monitor the situation, if we see queues forming anywhere, we should also direct our volunteers to manage the queues and help people to have the opportunity to carry out these activities in a better environment and the normal work of the banks should not be disrupted in any way,” concluded Nikol Pashinyan.

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