August 27, 2019
A talk with Mher Arshakyan in the pavilion of Factor TV.
– The National Security Service announced about the decision to arrest Gagik Khachatryan, Armenia’s former minister of finance. What is your opinion? Why now?
– It would be best for me not to comment. It would be best if we had overcome this atmosphere in the past year and a half. It would be best if everyone, including the well-known Khachatryan Gagik, found ways to give back to the society what the society fairly demands. There could be foundations, initiatives, various projects, because we were to see that they too were involved in those changes. Otherwise, how long will all this take?
– Can this NSS operation be considered as a means to distract the attention of the society from Amulsar?
-A new mountain. You said it.
– What is your opinion? Why didn’t Gagik Khachatryan flee to Russia like Mihran Poghosyan and Aram Harutyunyan?
– It is not my favourite topic. I said how it could develop if there was a fund, a big foundation, because it was supposed that we could come to a big agreement in the result of investments, otherwise, a strong hand is required. NSS is that strong hand. It is not in the result of a good life.
– In your opinion, who is the next of the previous authorities to appear in the sight of the NSS?
– You should spare me. I fell off the bike badly and got multiple injuries in my arm. I should have made a condition that I can’t be asked vulnerable questions so as not to get excited or emotionally strained.
– If we come on to Amulsar, what are your observations? Is the exploitation of Amulsar a necessity for the state?
– The problem of Amulsar existed before Nikole Pashinyan, and no matter he is at fault or not, the present government is to give solutions to it, and as our government will encounter more problems like Amulsar, I’d very much like methods of solutions to be found, so that it might not be considered misfortune or accident which would weaken our society and state. Just on the contrary, we would become more powerful as more challenging problems are ahead of us. With this respect, I would like the Ministry of Environment of RA to play the role of the first violin and not the Investigative Committee.
– An episode was found because of which they had to turn to the Investigative Committee.
– Such episodes can always be found. That’s not the problem. But we could have spoken about it for nearly a year and a half, couldn’t we? The revolution gave us an opportunity. It became clear that we should come to an agreement. Such problems can’t be solved without mutual agreement. At the same time, we had no such culture, because such developments couldn’t take place in time of previous authorities. New debating and discourse tools should have been created. The ministry should have changed its structure. National laboratories should have been established the expertise of which would be trustworthy. I am not so much inspired when they speak highly of international experts. On the other hand, we speak about our scientific potential and our experience. They seem to contradict one another. We live in a time when the fact is not a fact, the decision of the court is not a decision either in the First Instance or in the Constitutional, let alone the order, the Investigative Committee, the contract, the investigation… All this is not a fact. These are dangerous times. In this case, it is not understood at all what is being resolved.
– So, has the value of the fact been lost?
– Yes, the value of the fact has been lost in this atmosphere of unbelief, distrust, and disobedience. And the demand for a specialist is lost. The society is to be made up of professional audiences, and each issue should demand its specialist. We have so many universities with their appropriate chairs and laboratories. I mean the expertize in law and economics. We should have listened to the voices of the specialists who had taken part in the previous expertise. They are still speaking out.
– In your opinion, why does the prime minister, who has made the revolution, fails to convince the people of Amulsar’s exploitation.
– A big period of time was missed, disregarded. The dangerous feature of the first actions of blocking the roads should have been evaluated. Now we are reaping the fruits of it, and it is not good. And the prime minister shouldn’t have acted in a mono theater of that emergency situation. What are the authorieties for? How can a responsible authority be formed. This was a serious test for our government and an opportunity to show its strength. You cannot tear yourself away from responsibility. You got the people’s vote. They should have shown that they could work with the public, and that they could involve the professionals that exist.
– Have you got your own answer to the question: should Amulsar be exploited or not?
– I know for sure that the exploitation is possible in the atmosphere of mutual agreement. I wonder how we can come to that agreement.