Jun 24, 2017

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There is decision on extradition of Hrachya Harutyunyan

The relatives of Hrachya Harutyunyan are waiting when the decision of the Court will reach the Ministry of Justice. At the session held on June 16, it was decided to extradite Hrachya Harutyunyan.

Victor Martirosyan, father of Hrachya Harutyunyan’s wife told “A1+”, that the Ministry is waiting for the decision.

To remind, On July 13, 2013 the gravel-loaded truck driven by Hrachya Harutyunyan, an Armenian citizen working in Russia, collided with a packed commuter bus outside the Russian capital. The impact of the crash was so powerful that the bus had split in two. The accident claimed 18 lives and injured more than forty others. The investigation revealed that the accident resulted from poor maintenance of the truck resulting in a brake malfunction. Harutyunyan, according to investigators, was to know about it. In August, a Moscow district court sentenced Hrachya Harutyunyan to 6 years and 9 months in prison on charges of ‘violating traffic and vehicle operation rules, which unwittingly led to the death of two or more persons.’

Harutyunyan has health problems. His relatives believe after his transfer to Armenia he will undergo operations.


Situation on border during last week

During the period of June 18-24, on the line of Contact between the opposing forces of Artsakh and Azerbaijan, the adversary violated the ceasefire regime about 400 times, firing from weapons of different caliber and using 60 mm and 82 mm mortars and anti-tank 7 automatic grenade launchers in different parts of the Line of Contact.

Besides the abovementioned violations of the ceasefire regime, the Artsakh Defense army repulsed an infiltration attempt by Azerbaijan’s special forces on the night of June 22.

Defense Army units were quick to spot the advancement of the enemy’s sabotage group and force them back to initial positions. The adversary lost four of its troops in action and retreated, leaving personal items in the neutral zone.

The Armenian side did not have losses.

The DA vanguard units continue keeping the front line under full control and carrying out reliable defense of military positions.


Condition of 7 servicemen is serious: new details

Today early in the morning big car accident occurred in Gegharkunik marz; the bus of the Ministry of Defense overturned.

As a result of the accident 12 contractual servicemen with bodily injuries were hospitalized.

The press secretary of the Ministry of Defense gives new details, “New situation; 8 servicemen are being transferred to Yerevan, the condition of two servicemen is serious, one serviceman has fractures. The condition of others is satisfactory.”


150,000 Armenians and only one Armenian school in New York

The only Armenian school of New York, Holy Martyrs Day school has recently celebrated its 50th anniversary.

There are 150,000 Armenians in New York and only one Armenian school.

Video by Voice of America


Shift to summer regime

Gagik Surenyan, head of the meteorological center of the Hydromet Service, informs on his Facebook page:

“Warm air currents are penetrating from Iraq. During the upcoming 5 days there will be no precipitations in the whole territory of the republic, air temperature will increase by 24-28 degrees in all the regions, reaching +35…+36 degree on June 27-28 in valleys.”


MoD bus overturns: 12 contractual servicemen hospitalized

Today early in the morning big car accident occurred in Gegharkunik marz; the bus of the Ministry of Defense overturned.

Press secretary of the Minister of Defense Artsrun Hovhannisyan informs that as a result of the accident 12 contractual servicemen with bodily injuries were hospitalized. Their lives aren’t at risk.

According to the words of Hovhannisyan, the condition of one of the servicemen is assessed critical; he is being transferred to Yerevan; others are being examined, their preliminary condition is assessed satisfactory.


“We don’t want to spend 5 years ineffectively”

Mnatsakan Parakshiyev and Hayk Petrosyan, members of Yerevan Council of Elders, are not going to lay down their mandates. Today they told the journalists about it.

To remind, Yerkir Tsirani Party expressed distrust to the members of the Council of Elders, who had been nominated by the list of Yerkir Tsirani Party but have recently left the party, on the bases that the members refused to undertake the commitments put forward by the party.

“A1+” hosted Hayk Petrosyan, member of Yerevan Council of Elders to talk on the topic more in detail.


Ecotax also for not polluting environment

According to Eduard Yeghyan, current athlete of Armenian Automobile Federation, there are few electromobiles in Armenia, though, they are future of the cars.

“In Armenia only few individuals have electromobiles, which are expensive models. But the Japanese Nissan electromobile is affordable to everyone. For example, in the last one month Georgia has imported 5100 such cars.”

The electromobile doesn’t pollute environment, what’s more it rarely breaks down until the final breakdown of the battery.

The biggest problem connected with the introduction of electromobiles in Armenia is absence of charging stations.

“Electromobile can be charged at home with simple electric wire, which takes about 4 hours. But that process is short at charging stations. Besides, in case of charging stations, people can go long distances by electromobiles,” noted the experienced racer.

Eduard Yeghyan is surprised that for importing electromobile ecotax must be paid.

“It is true, it is a symbolic sum, but it isn’t clearly stated in our code, why ecotax must be paid for eco-friendly car.”


Raffi Hovannisian pays official visit to the US Embassy

Upon the invitation of United States Ambassador Richard Mills, today Raffi K. Hovannisian paid an official visit to the US Embassy in Yerevan.

Mills and Hovannisian discussed a broad array of matters relating to American-Armenian relations, regional security, and pressing global developments.

Raffi Hovannisian, Armenia’s first Minister of Foreign Affairs, chairs the Heritage Party and serves as founding director of the Armenian Center for National and International Studies.


Over past 1 day 11 road traffic accidents registered

According to the operations reports of Police of the Republic of Armenia, 11 out of 13 cases of infliction of bodily injuries registered in the territory of the republic from June 22 to June 23, as well as 6 cases of theft, 4 cases of swindling, 2 cases of hooliganism and 2 cases of counterfeiting, 1 case of attempted murder, 1 case of squandering, 1 case of robbery and 1 case of bribery have been detected, 2 cases of detection of narcotics have been registered.

From earlier committed crimes 3 cases of swindling, 1 case of infliction of bodily injuries and 1 case of theft have been detected.

Over the past 1 day, 11 road traffic accidents have been registered in the republic: 14 people got bodily injuries of varying levels of gravity.


In Nor Artagers people do not have time to live

170 ha territory isn’t irrigated in Nor Artagers community of Armavir marz. The village has had water shortage since the years of independence. The promise by the authorities that irrigation network will be constructed is up in the air.

“We were told that water supplies will be ensured, but the promise hasn’t been fulfilled,” says one of the villagers.

In Nor Artagers backgammon is the only activity the elderly are engaged in. They play in order to forget daily problems. And this year residents of Nor Artagers have much to forget. Still in spring they understood that in summer they will not have harvest due to frostbite, “Temperature was 12-13 degrees below zero during flowering, now people don’t have anything, neither apricot nor other fruits. There is only 30-40 % plum, villagers didn’t get cherry harvest. How can people pay their loans?” says the elderly man playing backgammon.

The men of Nor Artagers have left for seasonal work abroad because of short of harvest. They cannot but go abroad, as they must earn money for keeping their families and paying the loans. The financial condition of those, who stay in the village, is hopeless. One of the villagers says, “We can hardly make ends meet. We take loans, cultivate the soil, pay the loans, and in winter take loans again. 90 percent do like that.”

The streets of Nor Artagers, which officially have 1500 residents, are almost empty and hot weather is not the reason for that. Occasionally seen cars are loaded with agricultural tools; villagers hurry to fields. The men playing backgammon joke that the villagers under the burden of problems do not have time to live.

Nor Artagers is a multinational village- Armenians, Yazidis, Assyrians live side by side. They live in solidarity. But one problem is typical to everybody; the young cannot see future here. “Flow to Russia, abroad is high; the young people are few, as there is no interest.”

Former building of cultural center built 70 years ago was turned into latrine. The elderly woman recalls, “Until 60s’ life was active; cinema, theatre, but now the young have no place for entertainment,” says the woman.

Residents of Nor Artagers cannot remember when for the last time the high ranking officials visited them, but they are waiting for them. They have much to tell them.


“Taking care of children cannot affect fathers’ manfulness”

Both in Swedish and Armenian families dads not only earn means for living, but they also take care of children, educate and feed their babies.

The photo exhibition entitled “Armenian dads and Swedish dads” opened in Yerevan Metro “Republic Square” station is on this topic. 18 heroes are from Armenia, 25 from Sweden. The exhibition will be open until July 8.

Martin Fredriksson, Charge d’ affaires of the Embassy of Sweden in Yerevan, says, “In Sweden family is under state care. There is a law, when a child is born, the family is given 480 days’ paid vacation and both parents can use that privilege.”

According to the words of Swedish diplomat, both in Europe and Armenia women do not want to have children so that their career isn’t damaged. But if there is solidarity and mutual understanding in the family, that problem will be easily solved, “Taking care of children cannot affect fathers’ manfulness. Career of the dads depicted in these photos hasn’t been affected. They were able to combine family and work,” added Martin Fredriksson.

Photographer Areg Balayan shot Armenian men and their children.

The author of Swedish stories is Johan Bävman. He has started his research long ago to understand what it gave to Swedish dads, “I used photos of dads and children in everyday situations and conversations with dads, aiming to draw attention at dads, who put their children and families ahead of work and career,” says Johan Bävman.

Swedish Dads project has been exhibited around the world and has been even issued in the form of a book.


Armenian musician is a concertmaster of one of the orchestra’s of the Shen Yun Performing Arts 5 companies

Stepan Khalatyan, a musician who resides in the USA, and has performed at the most prestigious concert halls all over the world, has been working as a concertmaster of one of the orchestra’s of the Shen Yun Performing Arts 5 companies, as well as the principal of the second violins of the Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra.

”In 2013 my friend Karen Khachatryan (trombone) told me about Shen Yun Performing Arts company in New York. It is an organization comprised of 5 companies and it presents Chinese art via dances and 3D animations, as well as with live performance of the orchestra, performing all over the world. In 2014 I took part in the auditions and became a concertmaster of one of the orchestra’s of the Shen Yun Performing Arts 5 companies, as well as the principal of the second violins of the Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra. So I appeared in the USA!”,- violinist says.

During the last 4 years Stepan Khalatyan has performed at the best concert halls at 37 out of 51 states of the USA: Carnegie Hall, Chicago Symphony Center, Boston Symphony Hall, John F. Kennedy Center, etc. He had concerts at the prestigious halls in the Mexico, Colombia, Argentina. The orchestra he is part of had 77 concerts in 4,5 months!

”There are many Armenian musicians at the other orchestra’s of the Shen Yun Performing Arts: Karen Khachatryan (trombone), Mher Mnatsakanyan (clarinet), Ashot Dumanyan and Arsen Ketikyan (violin), Tigran Voskanyan (double bass). Last year Vardan Hakobyan (conductor, double bass) joined us. I am very proud that Chinese orchestra performs headed by Armenian musician. I hope that together we will be able to perform for the Armenian audience”,-he says.

Stepan Khalatyan has been playing violin since he was 6. His father Hakob Khalatyan is playing kamancha, he is also painter, and mother Anna Khalatyan is a cellist. He studied at Alexander Spendiaryan Music School (the class of Eduard Margaryan, then the class of Armen Jenterejyan). In 2004 he was appointed at Yerevan Komitas State Conservatory, where he was a student of Shahen Shahinyan, current rector of the Conservatory. He has got his master’s degree here. Despite the age his professional biography is very rich. He performed at Martiros Saryan and Avetik Isahakyan House Museums as a part of a quartet. In 2006 Stepan performed (as trio, quartet, quintet) with his father during the concert dedicated to his 50th anniversary.

A very important period of his life was connected with the State Youth Orchestra of Armenia, where Stepan has worked as the principal of the second violins. In 2007-20014 he performed with concerts in different parts of the world: France, Germany, Belgium, UAE with the Principal Conductor of the orchestra Sergey Smbatyan. During the same period, the orchestra and Stepan took part in the Moscow Easter festival founded by Valery Gergiev. In 2009 as a part of Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra, Stepan performed Symphony by E. Mirzoyan, headed by Gergiev. With the SYOA Stepan participated in famous Musica Riva Festival in Italy.

It should be noted that besides working at Shen Yun Stepan manages to perform at international stages and presenting pieces by Armenian composers.


Monitoring held to the north-west of Talish

On June 23, in accordance with the arrangement reached with the authorities of the Republic of Artsakh (Nagorno Karabakh Republic), the OSCE Mission conducted a planned monitoring of the Line of Contact between the armed forces of Artsakh and Azerbaijan, to the north-west of Talish village of the Martakert region.

From the positions of the Defense Army of the Republic of Artsakh, the monitoring was conducted by Field Assistants to the Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office Ghenadie Petrica (Moldova) and Ognjen Jovic (Bosnia and Herzegovina), as well as representative of the OSCE High-Level Planning Group (HLPG) Lieutenant-Colonel Ralph Bosshard (Switzerland).

From the opposite side of the Line of Contact, the monitoring was conducted by Field Assistant to the Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office Michael Olaru (Moldova), Personal Assistant to the CiO Personal Representative Simon Tiller (Great Britain), and representative of the OSCE HLPG Colonel Iurii Dudchenko (Russia).

The monitoring passed in accordance with the agreed schedule.

From the Artsakh side, the monitoring mission was accompanied by representatives of the Republic of Artsakh Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Defense.


Around 190,000 people die due to illicit drugs every year

Statement on the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking

The International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking recognises the severe impact that illicit drugs have on health, development, peace and security. Around 190,000 people die due to illicit drugs every year. But the damage visited upon lives and communities does not stop there. Drug use damages health in the form of debilitating HIV, hepatitis and tuberculosis, while drug trafficking nourishes money laundering, and deadly terrorism. Corruption, the great enabler of organized crime, exists throughout the drug supply chain.

In a collective response to these challenges, last year, countries unanimously agreed on an outcome document of the UN General Assembly Special Session containing over 100 recommendations to counter the world drug problem. These recommendations, forged by international consensus, stress the need for affordable science-based treatment and care, especially in prisons and for measures reducing the spread of HIV and other infections.

The recently released World Drug Report 2017 examines another worrying phenomenon: the nexus between drugs, crime and terrorism and reveals a shifting pattern of relationships. To use just one example, terrorists and non-state armed groups profit from the drug trade. By some estimates, up to 85 per cent of opium cultivation in Afghanistan occurs in Taliban-influenced territory. As new threats appear, including spreading methamphetamine and new psychoactive substances, old ones continue to thrive. Business models are evolving too, with cybercrime and the darknet increasingly playing a role.

Once viewed as a marginal actor on the development stage, drugs and crime are now viewed as a disturbing obstruction to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, particularly Goals 3 on health and Goal 16 on peaceful societies. Our response is to work closely with partners to prevent drugs and crime not simply profiting from, but also fuelling, the instability that undermines development, peace, and human rights.

UNODC, on this day, remains committed to peacefully and effectively addressing the challenge of illicit drugs based on the international drug control conventions, and their key principle of protecting the health and welfare of humankind.


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