Statement by “Amulsar Protectors” – Residents of Enlarged Jermuk Community
We hereby present to the media the statement of Amulsar Protectors published in the Facebook group “Against Mining in Amulsar”, run by the residents of Jermuk enlarged community.
“Recently some officials and individuals have been expressing opinions that it is necessary to resume the open-pit gold extraction project near Jermuk, a renowned spa and well-known brand. In addition to the existing unacceptable arguments, they now claim that in the aftermath of the war, Armenia is in a stringent economic condition and additional financial resources are needed to overcome the crisis.
Cognizant of the heft of the period we live in, we continue holding to the same position that no metal mines should operate in our region, that short-term projects should not override a well-established economic sector that has been operating for over 70 years, one that has perennial prospects. We reinstated this position in a community petition collected in the fall of 2018, whereby around 3000 residents of the enlarged administrative unit of Jermuk signed to their opposition to metal mining in the community.
We continue holding to our willful decision and will not allow, by all possible means, the destruction of our living environment and well-established social-economic system. We will not allow this to happen, especially now, after the war, when the state border has come as close as to Amulsar and Jermuk, where the mining project was planning dumping and storing dozens of thousands of hazardous chemicals, explosives and poisonous materials.
We call on all the decision-makers to evaluate the situation with a clear mind and refrain from any new reckless action repeating the hackneyed and unproven argument that “all risks are manageable”. We remind you that even the international review commissioned by the decision-makers proved the opposite, and the citizens of Armenia understood it well, despite efforts to show white as black.
To all those business entities that consider any partnership with the company wishing to mine gold at Amulsar, we friendly ask you to refrain from this idea and not to add to the severity of the explosive situation internally. Residents of Jermuk, nearby communities and the alert citizens of Armenia will not allow this attempt of building a chemical weapon of slow effect here, the dangers of which will persist for hundreds of years.
AMULSAR WILL REMAIN A MOUNTAIN!
March 3, 2021”