Read daily news summary for February 10 here.
It is necessary to have the consent of Armenian NSS in order to cover various topic in some areas of Syunik
RA NSS border troops issued a statement on Wednesday, announcing that due to the operative situation and security reasons, as well as based on the fact that border works are carried out in the relevant areas of Syunik marz, it is necessary to have the consent of the Armenian National Security bodies in order to cover various topics in those places. The consent is granted based on written application to the RA NSS.
As this decision was largely criticised, the RA NSS clarified today that “it is not aimed at the impede of the implementation of the professional activities of journalists or obtaining of the consent of the NSS. Coordination of works is also aimed to ensure efficient and secure conditions for the implementation of journalist activities.”
Another news regarding Syunik: Armenian Human Rights Defender Arman Tatoyan issued a statement today, saying that the presence of Azerbaijani armed forces (flags and signs) in the communities of Armenia's Syunik province, or on the roads connecting those communities, especially their any movement on those roads should cease and be ruled out forthwith.
"To be clear, by the mere presence of the Azerbaijani military, the rights of the border residents of Armenia, first and foremost, are seriously violated and severely endangered, including but not limited to their property rights. Military shootings. All these undermine the peaceful life and tranquility of Armenian civilians," Tatoyan said.
Parliament approves life imprisonment for high treason
The Prosperous Armenia Party (BHK)-authored bill on making high treason punishable by life imprisonment passed in the first reading. The bill is authored by MPs Iveta Tonoyan, Naira Zohrabyan and Vice Speaker Vahe Enfiajyan. Enfiajyan said that the law will define life imprisonment for espionage for the enemy, conveying state secrets to a foreign state or foreign organizations or their representatives, assisting in conducting hostile activities, collecting and transferring information containing state secrets at the orders of a foreign intelligence agency.
Armenia’s National Assembly adopted another bill in the first reading introduced by Vice Speaker Alen Simonyan to increase the fines for insult and slander charges. Those found guilty of “insult” will be forced to pay a maximum of five million drams, compared to the current one million. Those found guilty of “slander” will be forced to pay a maximum of ten million drams, compared to the current two million.
Other news from Armenia and Artsakh
- 4 more bodies of killed servicemen were found in the area of Fizuli.
- “The optimal solution for the issue of war prisoners is the exchange of ‘all for all’,” official representative of the Foreign Ministry of Russia Maria Zakharova said in a weekly briefing today.
- Artsakh Presidential Chief of Staff Artak Beglaryan told Hetq.am today that Artsakh will certainly have some sort of defense force, regardless of what it is formally called.
- The European Union notified Armenia about the completion of the ratification process by the EU and its Member States of the Armenia-European Union Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement on Wednesday, February 10. The Agreement will fully enter info force on March 1, 2021, the Armenian Foreign Ministry reports.
- The European Union and the World Health Organization announced they would spend 40 million euros ($48.48 million) over three years to ensure better access to COVID-19 vaccines in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine, Reuters reports.
- Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, at today’s Government cabinet session, said that the country’s agriculture was one of the two economic sectors that registered growth in 2020. Pashinyan noted that the growth was due to a 2018 program designed to provide equipment to agribusinesses on favorable leasing terms. Today, the Government adopted a decision to improve the terms of the state leasing support program.
- The Armenian Government approved the sale of a piece of land in Yerevan to Armenia Wine Factory LLC. The company says it plans to invest US $40 million at the site to build a high-rise Digitown International Center for Innovative IT Technologies. Armenia Wine says the project will create 5,000 new jobs. The site, at 13/12 Isakov Avenue now houses the boiler room and land adjacent to Yerevan Music Special School No. 13.