Ardvi Community residents, Lori Region, are concerned that the topic of Shehaghbyur gold-polymetallic mine field prospecting will get active again after the elections of the local government to be held on 5 November. Ardvi is on the list of the communities subject to optimization: together with Amoj, Aygehat, Arevatsag, Tsater, Karmir Aghek, Hagvi and Mghart communities are going to join Odzun community, Lori Region. There is no candidate for Odzun Community Head from Ardvi. Only one person is going to fight to stand for the Aldermen’s Council, but Ardvi residents don’t think s/he will be elected. “Only 140 people are entitled to vote in our community, out of which currently only 100-110 people are here in the community, while the others are out of the country. We need at least 300 votes to have our candidate elected and to have our interests presented. So it turns out we won’t have any representative in the Aldermen’s Council and we won’t be aware what kind of questions on our community will be discussed. Such small communities as we are shall have an opportunity to have a representative in the Aldermen’s Council,” Ardvi resident Rafik Kirakosyan said in his interview with EcoLur. “There are rumours among the people that certain candidates have promised certain powers in opening Ardvi mine, if they get help in the elections. I don’t want to have a second mining in our area, first of all, as a resident, if we speak about Ardvi mining, then Odzun enlargened community also becomes an impacted community. We have forests and shared pastures with Ardvi community. If mining starts, both Odzun and Ardvi will suffer. Odzun community residents will also oppose any mining, as far as I’m aware, they are all inspired with Ardvi opposition,” Odzun Community Deputy Head Armine Miqayelyan said and added, “An Armenian-French organization has sent the thymus growing in Ardvi for expertise and it turned out the thymus in the region has the strongest properties for health. In general, products, air, water and agricultural products have specific taste in Ardvi and are ecologically clean.” Ardvi residents claim they will continue fighting against mining in their residential area irregardless of optimization and the results of the elections: “Only through our corpses,” Ardvi residents said.
15:28 October 26, 2017