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5 Jan 2023


Armenia: Environmental activist facing new charges from mining company after claiming pipeline breakdown and river pollution at mine site

See all tags Allegations

Tehmine Yenokyan: "This is an indirect persecution of freedom of speech: there is ongoing pressure on me from big mining companies", 05 January 2023

[Summary translation prepared by Business and Human Rights Resource Center]

"There is an ongoing pressure on me by the big mining companies. Ani Alaverdyan, the representative of the Zangezur Copper Molibdenum Combine (ZCMC), has submitted a lawsuit to the Court of First Instance of Yerevan demanding the denial and compensation in the amount of 6 million AMD. On December 1, 2022, I posted on my Facebook page: "Yesterday, the pipeline going from ZCMC to its tailing dam broke down again, the Voghji river was again polluted, a criminal case was again initiated and it will be again forgotten , there will be a cover-up and they will move on." This sentence was based on the videos and descriptive texts of the content of the videos published by the environmental NGO "Right-holder residents of Kapan" on November 30...

On the occasion of the November 30 accident, a criminal case was initiated under the Article 369 of the Criminal Code...

I am not the original source of this video and the description, and I have used open sources published since November 30, regarding which there was no denial published either by ZCMC or the original sources.

On January 4, 2023, I received a letter from the mentioned person that ZCMC had filed a lawsuit against me demanding to deny the defamatory information, and asking for 6 million drams as compensation. This is an indirect persecution of free speech. All this is an absolute violation of the rights stipulated by the Constitution of Armenia and the Aarhus Convention. Additionally, I would like to mention that currently I am pursuing the restoration of my fundamental constitutional rights in the Armenian and International courts that had been violated as a result of another lawsuit launched by Lydian Armenia CJSC (in the amount of 1,224,000 AMD)."