Armenia to Reconstruct Alternative Road to Georgia

YEREVAN (combined sources)–Deputies of the Armenian Parliament–Victor Dallakian–Vardan Bostanjian and Vardan Mkrtchian visited the Armenian villages in Georgia’s Marneuli province on March 18. The visit was undertaken upon the initiative of the Parliament’s Commission on State and Legal Issues of which Victor Dallakian is Chairman.

The Armenian parliamentarians brought with them 2,000 text-books–stationery and building materials. The funds were provided by US Armenian benefactor Serop Ter-Poghosian–who now lives in Armenia.

The delegation was accompanied by Russia’s ambassador to Georgia and a representative of the Georgian Parliament. The preliminary agreement on the visit had been reached between Armenian Parliament Speaker Armen Khachatrian and his Georgian counterpart Zurab Zhvania.

Dallakian said the roads leading from Armenia to Javakhk–a region in southern Georgia predominantly inhabited by Armenia’s face the danger of closure–as Turkey provides funds for the construction of a railroad connecting it with Georgia–Russian troops are set to be withdrawn from the region–and 300,000 Meskhetian Turks are planned to return to Javakhk.

Another road leading from Armenia to Georgia–Privolnoye-Akhkorpi passes through Armenian inhabited villages–but today is no longer in operation. The region’s Armenian villages will probably be emptied if the road is not reconstructed said Dallakian.

Deputies agreed to set up an ad hoc "working group" tasked with securing government support and funding for ensuring adequate road communication between Privolnoe and Akhkorpi villages straddling the Armenian-Georgian border. The group will operate under the sponsorship of the parliament committee on state and legal affairs headed by Victor Dallakian.

Dallakian argued that the bypass provides for a shorter distance between the two capitals and will strengthen Armenia’s links with ethnic Armenia’s living in Georgia’s Marneuli district–mostly populated by ethnic Azerbaijanis. There are 130,000 Azeris–13,000 Armenia’s and 13,000 Georgians in the Marneuli province of Georgia.

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