NO DIALOGUE YET: Opposition leaders dismissed on Wednesday a renewed offer of dialogue with Armenia’s three ruling parties, insisting on an immediate end to government reprisals against their supporters, RFE/RL reported. They reiterated that the authorities must first release all “political prisoners” and stop preventing their supporters from attending unsanctioned rallies in Yerevan and arresting their participants.
In a joint statement on Tuesday, the governing Dashnaktsutyun, Orinats Yerkir and Republican parties said it is still possible to defuse the two-month political crisis in the country through negotiations. They also accused the opposition of deepening the tensions by continuing to hold rallies aimed at demanding President Robert Kocharyan’s resignation
TO PRISON THROUGH BOTTLE: Yerevan Court sentenced 24-year-old Edgar Arakelyan to 18 months in prison for throwing a plastic bottle at police during a police crackdown of opposition on April 13.
Arakelyan plead guilty, saying that he was not aware he was hitting a policeman, PanARMENIAN.Net reported. Also he said he did it instinctively after the police sprayed him with tear gas.
KARABAKH SETTLEMENT: Speaking to students in Baku, US Ambassador to Azerbaijan Rino Harnish stated that the Karabakh conflict "bears the threat of war; that is why the US government spares no effort to settle the conflict peacefully". At the same time the Ambassador touched upon of the concern of the Azeri Parliament Speaker who recently stated that "American companies do illegal business at the territory of occupied Nagorno Karabakh".
"In general, the US made no investments in Nagorno Karabakh", the diplomat emphasized.
DISSCUSSING CONFLICT: A round table was held in Moscow this week titled "Nagorno Karabakh: from standstill to progress," with participation of Armenian, Nagorno Karabakh and Azeri experts, PanARMENIAN.Net reported. The round table was organized under the patronage of the World Peace Organization (WPO).
The main goal of the forum is creation of conditions for closer dialogue between the parties involved in the Karabakh conflict with active participation of the Russian side. “We suppose Russia should promote active use of the political and economic potential of the Armenian and Azeri Diasporas to solve the Karabakh conflict by means of popular diplomacy,” said the President of WPO.
PILOTS IN CUSTODY: Armenian Ambassador to Egypt and Armenian Foreign Ministry representatives have traveled to Equatorial Guinea to determine the fate of the six Armenian pilots that are held in custody charged with coup d'etat attempt in the country, Arminfo reported..
The delegates met with the pilots and say that they feel well and receive food and medical care. The pilots insist on their innocence and deny any complicity in illegal activities. The Ambassador said that their trial is scheduled for June 5-20. "We are strongly convinced that their innocence will be proved," he said noting that he will visit Equatorial Guinea again before the trial.
NEW OWNER: Comsup Commodities Inc. US company has become the holder of 100% of the shares of Agarak Copper-Molybdenum Complex for $600,000 PanARMENIAN.Net reported.
In compliance with the contract, the company bound itself to invest $3.5 million to technological modernization of the enterprise and to increase the ore production volume within two years. By the end of this year the enterprise plans to come to using 100% of its capacities, which means producing 2.5 million tons of ore instead of the 2.3 million last year
HEALTH ISSUES: According to a health ministry-affiliated agency for medications and medical technologies, foreign pharmaceutical companies seeking registration of their products in Armenia will pay as much fee for expert examination of their medicines as local companies, Armenpress reported.
Until now overseas companies have paid $1,500 for conducting expert examination of their medicines and local companies, $400. The lower price for domestic companies was to help boost home pharmaceutical production. Under the new scheme, both local and foreign companies, will have to pay $1,200. Leveling of fees is one of the requirements Armenia assumed when joining the World Trade Organization.