The last media trip for 2018, organised by ICMPD in Armenia from 5-7 October, included Vayots Dzor and Syunik regions. The journalists from Public Radio, womennet.am, Haykakan Zhamanak, Golos Armenii, Ararat News, factor.am and vesti.am visited Goris and Kapan towns, as well as Gomk, Khndzorut, Bartsravan, Sharnukh and Uzhanis border villages.
The reason for focusing on the border villages was because the population outflow from these villages was quite high and at present they are at the edge of emptiness due to the absence of necessary infrastructure. The roads to the villages are so destroyed that the villagers cannot export agricultural products to the markets, which is slowing down the progress of the communities in general. Because of the bad roads the cooperative on organic agricultural production established a few years ago in Gomq village could not compete on the market and had to close down. The same situation was in Khndzorut village where the villagers are mainly engaged in nuts cultivation and production of high quality honey, which they cannot sell on the local markets because of bad roads, which, in its turn, leads to the migration of the villagers. The elder of the village says, that each time the village is fired at from Azeri side, the villagers hope, that after that, they will get in the focus of attention of the Government.
The problem with irrigation water is another reason that makes people leave for the search of work since the land cultivation becomes impossible. The elder of Uzhanis village says, that if the roads are not repaired and the issue of water solved, the villages will be empty in a few years.
The head of Shurnukh village, which is engaged in livestock breeding, told that before the amalgamation of the village, it was planned to build a small factory of milk processing and cheese production at the account of the local budget. Since now the budget is consolidated with the budgets of other villages of the region, this plan becomes impossible.
This was the third media trip of the media project implemented by ICMPD in Armenia within the framework of MIBMA project.