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Ruling Party ‘Still In Full Control’

April 17, 2014 Armenia, Top News No Comments
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Armenia – Education Minister Armen Ashotian talks to journalists after visiting a school in Yerevan, 4Apr2014.

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President Serzh Sarkisian maintains his hold on power and remains in full control of political processes in Armenia after the resignation of his government, the ruling Republican Party (HHK) insisted on Thursday.

Top Twitter Executive Visits Armenia

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Armenia – President Serzh Sarkisian (R) receives Twitter’s Vice-President Raffi Krikorian, Yerevan,17 April 2014.

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An Armenian-American vice-president of Twitter has met with President Serzh Sarkisian and held workshops in Yerevan during a weeklong visit to Armenia aimed at supporting its burgeoning information technology (IT) sector.

Dashnaks To Stay Out Of New Government, For Now

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The Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutyun) said on Thursday that it will not join a new governing coalition which President Serzh Sarkisian is trying to form following the recent resignation of his current cabinet.

A leader of the opposition party, Armen Rustamian, made clear, however, that it may still become part of the government later on if Sarkisian accepts a set of mainly political conditions set by Dashnaktsutyun.

Date Set For Armenia’s Accession Treaty With Russian-Led Union

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With less than two weeks to go before the signing of an accession treaty with the Customs Union, Armenia has not yet secured vital trade preferences for its membership in the Russian-led bloc, Economy Minister Vahram Avanesian admitted on Thursday.

Sarkisian Ally To Quit Armenian Government

April 16, 2014 Armenia, Culture, Top News No Comments
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The Orinats Yerkir Party of Artur Baghdasarian, a key political ally of President Serzh Sarkisian, announced on Wednesday its decision to pull out of Armenia’s government, adding a new twist to political uncertainty in the country.
 
Senior Orinats Yerkir figures announced the move, anticipated since Tuesday, as they met the press after a meeting of the party’s governing board. A board statement presented by them said that throughout its six-year involvement in the Sarkisian administration the party has lacked levers to have a “real role in the government” and to genuinely share power with the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (BHK). It also implicitly complained about the president’s failure to appoint Baghdasarian as prime minister.
 
Heghine Bisharian, the number two figure in the party hierarchy, made clear that Baghdasarian will resign as secretary of Armenia’s National Security Council. But she said all three members of the outgoing cabinet affiliated with Orinats Yerkir — Agriculture Minister Sergo Karapetian, Emergency Situations Minister Armen Yeritsian and Urban Development Minister Samvel Tadevosian — will resign from the party.
 

Fish Farms Concerned Over Tighter Regulation

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Armenia – Grapes harvested at a vineyard in the Ararat Valley, 9Sep2013.

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Armenian Inflation Down In 2014

April 16, 2014 Armenia, Top News No Comments
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Armenia — Shoppers in a food supermarket in Yerevan.

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Opposition Forces Pledge Continued Cooperation

April 16, 2014 Armenia, Top News No Comments
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Armenia – Levon Ter-Petrosian (L), Gagik Tsarukian (C) and Raffi Hovannisian meet in Yerevan, 10Apr2014.

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Aliyev Blasts Armenia, West Over Karabakh

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Azerbaijan – President Ilham Aliyev speaks at a cabinet meeting in Baku, 13Apr2014.

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RSS International News By CNN

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CNN International Explores the Secrets of Armenia’s Stone Henge

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RSS Middle East News By BBC

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Featured Books

Book Reviews

John Balian’s “Novel Approach” Brings the Armenian Saga to the Masses – An interview with John Balian by Lucine Kasbarian

Gray Wolves and White Doves cover art

Armenians often wish for a tale about the Armenian Genocide and its aftermath that would make a blockbuster film and draw attention to their cause. John Balian’s new book, Gray Wolves and White Doves (CreateSpace/Amazon.com), may be that tale.

 Largely autobiographical, this atmospheric novel is presented through the eyes of an innocent young boy trying to make sense of the world as he grows up amid repressive conditions in Western Armenia/Eastern Turkey during the 1960s and 70s.

 This fast-paced, multi-layered narrative takes readers from Hanna Ibelin’s (a.k.a. Jonah Ibelinian’s) close-knit family life in the perilous Asia Minor region of Palu to terror and tragedy while en route to Syria’s Kamishli, to a bleak existence on the mean streets of Istanbul.

New Children’s Picture Book From Armenian Folklore

Teaneck, N.J. and Belmont, Mass. –  An Armenian folktale retold by Armenian-American writer Lucine Kasbarian and illustrated by Moscow-based artist Maria Zaikina debuts with Marshall Cavendish Children’s Publishers in April 2011.

The Greedy Sparrow: An Armenian Tale is from the ancient Armenian oral tradition and culture, which was nearly obliterated during the Turkish genocide of the Armenians, Assyrians and Greeks in 1915. The author learned the tale from her father, editor and columnist C.K. Garabed, who would recite it to her at bedtime. He had learned it from his own grandmother, a celebrated storyteller from the Old Country.  The tale was first put to paper by Armenian poet Hovhannes Toumanian at the turn of the 20th century.

“We Need To Lift The Armenian Taboo”

Turkish writer and publicist Ahmet Insel labels the initiative of the Turkish Nationalist Movement Party to pray namaz on the ruins of Ani as provocation.

In an interview with “A1+,” the publicist said the initiative was supported only by a small percentage of Turks.

“They offered namaz in Ani in protest against Christian rites carried out in Trabzon and Akhtamar. The leader of the Nationalist Movement Party, Devlet Bahceli said if Christians are allowed to pray inside museums, similarly he can pray namaz in Armenian churches,” said Ahmet Insel.

The Turkish writer arrived in Armenia to participate in a book festival. Presentation of Armenian version of Dialogue sur le tabou arménien (Dialogue about the Armenian Tabou) co-authored by Ahmet Insel and Michel Marian was held during the festival.

US Media Discusses The Armenian Genocide

BURBANK, CALIFORNIA –  KFI 640, a popular news/talk radio station hosted by Bill Handel on September 23 aired a live interview with Michael Bobelian, the writer of a new book titled  Children of Armenia: A Forgotten Genocide and the Century-long Struggle for Justice

The book chronicles the aftermath of the Armenian Genocide of 1915, and recounts a people’s struggle for justice in the face of a century of silence and denial.

During the interview, which was aired during the prime morning time slot, Bill Handel addressed both the efforts within the United States to ensure that the US government appropriately acknowledges the Armenian Genocide and Turkey’s ongoing denial.

Handel, a well known and nationally syndicated radio talk show host, has discussed the Armenian Genocide during past shows.

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10:24, March 14, 2014

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For Better or For Worse: Nature Protection Ministry Proposes Amendments to Water Use Laws

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16:44, February 14, 2014

With the goal of providing a systematic solution to issues of effective use of water resources in Ararat valley, the Ministry of Nature Protection of the Republic of Armenia (RA) is proposing amendments and additions to the RA Water Code, and the RA laws on the Republic of Armenia’s National Water Program, on Licensing, and on State Tax.

The proposed legislative package has been sent to the relevant state agencies for their input.

Head of the Ministry of Nature Protection’s Water Resources Management Agency Volodya Narimanyan told Hetq, said that with this amendment package his ministry is attempting to clarify the ideas and the ambiguous commentary, as well as introduce new requirements. For example, one of the main points of the proposed amendments is if water use permit conditions are not met, the water use permit might be annulled.

2013 in Civil Society: Protests and more protests

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The struggle of civil movements this year has been comprehensive and diverse with limited success in certain fields due to unified efforts and active involvement of the civil society.

Despite the rather passive start of the year in terms of civil movements, the second half of 2013 turned out to be tense with active developments.

Some analysts believe that especially after the February 18 presidential ballot, when current president Serzh Sargsyan won a decisive victory over his opponents and was re-elected for a second term, despite the widespread poverty and atmosphere of injustice in the country, people became even more aware of the fact that is it impossible to achieve changes via elections and started practicing their constitutional rights to civil protest and disobedience more frequently.

Armenian Foreign Policies 2013: Customs Union, U-turn on EU accord, Karabakh, Turkey, regional developments

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2013 became a milestone year for Armenia not only in its foreign, but also domestic politics. After nearly four years of negotiations with the European Union over the signing of an association agreement on September 3 Armenia unexpectedly announced its intention to join the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan.

This decision has had its influence not only on Armenia proper, but also on the processes elsewhere in Eastern Europe. Inspired by Armenia’s decision, Russia stepped up its pressure on Ukraine, which suspended the process of signing of the Association Agreement with the EU one week before the Vilnius summit of Eastern Partnership. As a result, on November 29 such agreements were initialed only by Moldova and Georgia.

Heritage reshuffle: Postanjyan becomes new leader of parliamentary faction

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Zaruhi Postanjyan has been elected new head of the opposition Heritage faction in parliament. The change comes after Ruben Hakobyan announced his decision to resign as faction leader earlier today.

Talking to media in parliament Hakobyan said Heritage Party leader Raffi Hovannisian had been notified about his move well in advance. He left questions about reasons for his step without commentary, only saying that he had decided to step down as faction leader before the recent scandal around Postanjyan in the wake of her controversial question to President Serzh Sargsyan about his gambling habit at the PACE plenary session in Strasbourg on October 2.