This video depicts a confrontation between environmental activists and Syunik governor Surik Khachatryan in Kajaran (the video is in Armenian).
Basically they are saying what I wrote in my previous post, emphasizing that the extracted copper and the profits associated with its sale on the market will go to Germany, where the parent mining company is based, and that the Armenia economy as well as the countless village inhabitants that will be displaced, won’t reap any benefit from the mining.
The woman wearing the hat is the maverick Mariam Sukhudyan, but unfortunately I cannot identify the man in the camouflage jacket. Mariam is certainly an inspirational woman and she is the single most effective spokesman for badly needed change in this country — change in the mindset and the corrupted values fostered by so many politicians here.
Towards the end of the video he called her a dragonfly and purportedly said that something “bad” would happen to her if she continued her protest (it was not audible but appeared in print).
Her continued efforts (as well as those of her teammates) will undoubtedly spark a fire in the hearts of many Armenians to stand up for themselves. It’s just a question of when.
One thing is certain for many people not just in Syunik but in the minds of many here in Yerevan — this guy has to go and this project must be stopped. He can barely defend himself and can’t even speak proper Armenian. Being born in the States I was not educated in Armenia and mostly self-taught in the language, yet it seems I can speak better Armenian than he can. The video is testament to how utterly uneducated Khachatryan and undoubedly many other people in government are.
Kudos to these brave activists. May their crucial work continue unabated.