Civil Society organizations demand border opening

The war in Georgia has left the countries of the South Caucasus struggling with substantial risks and challenges. As a consequence of the recent crisis, which further exacerbated an impasse created by the existence of the protracted conflicts, the region is deprived of a vital vain to transport goods through the countries of the region. The railroad running through Georgia is practically useless today because of the destruction of the bridge near Gori. There is…

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Western Union international money transfer system is prohibited in Armenia

August 25 decision of the Armenian Central Bank the Western Union international money transfer system is prohibited in Armenia. The CB Council decided to prohibit participation of the Armenian banks in the mentioned system and annul the contracts with it. The decision is motivated by the Armenian banks’ risk management. In reality, it all started after Azerbaijan protested the fact, that Western Union, Money Gram and other money transfer systems are operating in the territory…

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Abkhazia, South Ossetia to become a measure of Russia's international influence

Both houses of Russia’s parliament have urged Dmitri Medvedev to recognize the independence of Georgia’s breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, BBC Reports. Although voted unanimosly in favour by both houses of Russian Duma, the bill will have to be ratified by President Medvedev, before it comes into action. The choice is not as easy as it seems, however, and the Kremlin might delay its decision while it carries out wider negotiations with the…

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The Armenian Observer blog news

Starting from today the Armenian Observer blog will be available on http://ditord.com domain along with its old http://ditord.wordpress.com address. This has been done purely for your convenience so it will be easier to type the address of this blog. Meanwhile, I’m also looking for other authors/contributors to this blog, so if you are interested, please leave a comment to this entry. I will be travelling intensively from September 1st to 15th, so for that period…

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Constitutional Freedom of Expression forced out of Northern Avenue

It has become obvious that the protesters of Northern Avenue can’t avoid incidents, that pursue an aim to restrict their constitutional right to freely express their opinion. People taken to the police station have become a usual thing, but no one expected the Police to see danger also in the posters fixed on the walls of the buildings. On August 25, as people of Northern Avenue said at about 10:30 about 20 policemen intruded and…

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Government bill threatens Lake Sevan

On August 21, 2008 the National Assembly of the Republic of Armenia adopted a government bill giving green light to increased water release from Lake Sevan. According to the original law 240 million cubic meters of water should have been taken from the lake to be used for electricity generating via Hrazdan Cascade and irrigation puposes. The new bill will allow the release of 360 million cubic meters of water. The authorities are explaining the…

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Armenia 2 – 1 Turkey

Henrik Mkhitaryan scored the late winner in Yerevan (© Khachik Chakhoyan) Unzipped has an exciting post about the surprise win of the Armenian national youth team (European Championship Qualifying Stage of the Under 21 Championship) over Turkey.  Although the game was not that significant and the youth teams are rarely considered important, the fact that the game took place between these two countries which lack diplomatic relations since Turkey closed the Armenian border in 1993…

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Unprecedented levels of violence against journalists in August

August 2008 was unprecedented with the amount of violence against media representatives. Gagik Hovakimyan of “Haykakan Zhamanak” (August 1), freelancer Gagik Shamshyan (August 5), Gohar Veziryan of “Chorrord Ishkhanutyun” (August 6), Lusine Barseghyan of “Haykakan Zhamanak” (August 11) and Hrach Melkumyan of the Armenian service of Radio Liberty (August 18 ) were all subjected to attacks and illegal actions of police, court officials and unidentified males for their affiliation with media outlets known for their…

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Russian bloggers go after YouTube

Evgeny Morozov | Wednesday, August 20, 2008 While the real war between Russia and Georgia may be over, the Internet war lingers on, with virtual battalions continuing to fight on sites like YouTube. The point of contention is a short clip of a Fox News program, in which Shepard Smith, the host, interviewed two South Ossetians: a 12 year-old-girl from Walnut Creek, Amanda Kokoev, and her aunt, Laura Tedeeva-Korewiski, who happened to be in the…

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Two Polish journalists denied entry to Armenia?

Reporters Without Borders has circulated a press release, calling on Armenia to lift bans on two Polish journalists who, according to the media watchdog, have been denied entry into the country in the past six days. The press release reported the case of Wojciech Jagielski, a well-known foreign correspondent working for the Polish daily Gazeta Wyborcza, on 14 August. The journalist was turned back at the land border between Armenia and Georgia, where he had…

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