In a conversation this reporter had with Hakob Sanasaryan, who heads the Greens Union of Armenian, the environmental activist lambasted the Armenian government’s policy regarding Lake Sevan and claimed that top officials wanted to privatize the “blue jewel” of Armenia.
“According to the information reaching me, Armenia’s Deputy Prime Minister Armen Gevorgyan is involved in the scheme and a former official from the Ministry of Justice,” Hakobyan stated, adding that he’s certain that President Sargsyan and Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan have given the go-ahead.
“They want to divide it into 4-5 sections. The owners will have to monitor the river discharges into the lake and other water quality issues. According to the plan, the sections will have to be utilized collaboratively, but we know this will not happen. They will become the property of this or that person,” Hakobyan argued, pointing out that the government in power today in Armenia is intent on selling off everything, even down to the last needle.
When I asked Hakonbyan if he knew the names of the future owners of Sevan, the activist responded that he didn’t.
“This isn’t merely an issue about Sevan. Armenia, which emerged victorious in the Artsakh War, is methodically being destroyed from the inside. What sense is there in writing petitions to the president or the prosecutor general when they view us as alien and ripe objects for plunder?, Hakobyan exclaimed.
The Greens Union head also didn’t mince words regarding the lack of press coverage on the Lake Sevan issue.
“I simply denounce all those press outlets, whether Hetq or others, that know about the government’s plans for Sevan but who knowingly refuse to write anything,” said Hakobyan.
When I asked Hakobyan what steps need to be taken regarding Sevan, he answered that the lake’s problem was intimately connected to other outstanding problems in Armenia.
“For fundamental solutions it’s necessary to reject the presidential system and restore the death penalty. The president and the party he controls have brought the country to death’s door. And we all know that after dying nothing can be done, Hakobyan said.
He also called for the establishment of a ‘national media outlet’ that would only disseminate factual news and thus convince the people that their future was threatened.
As a way of ensuring more objective news coverage, Hakobyan also proposed that news outlets in Armenia should refuse funding from foreign sources and from domestic anti-nationalist oligarchs.