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Seda Ghukasyan

Armenia: $119,000 in Bonuses to Ruling Parliamentary Faction MPs

On July 6, Armenian National Assembly Speaker Alen Simonyan signed a decree stating that all MPs would receive a one-time cash bonus.

It turned out that the money will only go to MPs in his ruling Civil Contract faction.

Simonyan’s press secretary, Tzovinar Khachatryan, told Hetq the bonuses were for the “hard work” the MPs performed in recent parliamentary committee meetings and special sessions.  Opposition MPs would not get the bonuses, Khachatryan said, given their “inexcusable absences” from the parliament. Opposition With Honor and Hayastan MPs have boycotted the legislature since April.

The amount of the bonuses wasn’t made public, and Simonyan’s decree didn’t specify the amount. Those wanting to know had to send a written request to Simonyan’s office.

That’s what Hetq did.

The bonuses totaled 48.8 million drams (US$119,000). Each MP will receive a bonus equaling one month of salary - 661,140 drams including taxes.

MPs who chair the parliament’s various standing committees receive a monthly salary of 793,680 drams. Deputy committee chairs receive 694,470 drams monthly.

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