Saturday, 22 September

A License for Robbery

We obtained the document pictured here in Berdzor. As you can see, this license gives Yurik Petrosyan, the director of Jupiter, Ltd. permission to dismantle the reinforced concrete structures of damaged houses in several settlements to use the material for construction work elsewhere in the region.

We tried to find out whether there were any records at the Kashatagh administration about how many reinforced concrete structures the company has dismantled for construction work. “It has never happened,” an administration official who asked not to be identified told us. Our source also told us that this company has engaged in this business since 1995.

Why are documents like this needed? In the village of Mush the roof of the school building was in need of repair, but the building itself was in decent shape and the villagers decided to repair it. The building was supposed to serve as the school, the local administration office, and meeting hall. The villagers united and prevented Yurik Petrosyan from pulling down the building. So he went away and bought this license from Hamlet Khachatryan, the head of the Kashatagh Administration. What this is in fact is a license to steal. Yurik Petrosyan paid the Mush village administration 50,000 drams (about $125) in return. He took from the school building 150 concrete panels, which he sold in Goris, where each panel costs at least $100. It is not known what percentage of this sum he paid to Hamlet Khachatryan. Yurik Petrosyan also dismantled the buildings of the wine factory of the village of Aygehovit, even though the Tufenkian Foundation had decided to restore it. The foundation has rehabilitated 35 hectares of vineyards in the villages of Aygehovit and Urekan. The wine is currently being produced in the Hadrut winery 70 kilometers away.

Nonsensically, buildings and water pipelines are being dismantled and at the same time money is being allocated for acquiring construction materials and building water pipelines.

In November 2005 the installation of gas lines in Berdzor began. Several kilometers of pipes had been stored for the project and their cost was included in the appraisal for construction work done under the former administration. But then it turned out that the new head of the administration, Hamlet Khachatryan, had sold the pipes. Instead of bringing charges against him the NKR government made new allocations for acquiring pipes.

There are numerous instances like this and both the government of Nagorno Karabakh and the government of Armenia know about all them. Perhaps this is part of an overall policy aimed at emptying these territories. If so, it has certainly been successful.

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