Armenia on verge of human crisis

Armenia on verge of human crisis

By Jamila Babayeva

New official figures show that Armenian's population growth has decreased considerably in 2013.

"The natural population growth of the country decreased by 1.7 percent last year compared to 2012," the National Statistics Service reported.

The report also said that some 41,770 children were born in 2013. The overall number of Armenian population decreased by 23,600 people reaching to 3,170,400 on January 1, 2014," official statistics said.

Demographic crisis has raised public concerns among most Armenians who are suffering from lack of food.

According to "Poverty and food security in January-September 2013" report by the National Statistics Service, the average daily energy consumed by Armenians was only 2.169 calories that is 63 calories less than the minimum daily rate, which is 2.232 calories per capita.

The report also concluded that people living in urban areas do not live better than people in the suburbs and countryside. A daily energy consumed by residents of the capital Yerevan is 28 calories less than the average.

The critical situation of the country has sounded the alarm in the parliament over the starvation problem across the country.

Armenian MP Vage Enfiadjan said 50,000 Armenians lost their jobs in 2013.

"During the last year, the country was witnessed to shameful situation: 10,000 small and medium-sized businesses were closed leading to the unemployment of about 50,000 people. This in turn led to more starvation across the country," he said recently at a parliamentary meeting.

Unsolved social problems have created a deep dissatisfaction among the nation. This comes as the government is unable to find a way out of the current crises.

Some 4,000 families displaced since 1988 earthquake in the second largest city of Gyumri are still waiting to be accommodated in the apartments promised by the ruling party during the pre-election campaign.

The president, as well as a prime minister promised that 430 apartments would be built to accommodate the displaced families. But the construction process has not yet accomplished and the families are waiting for state aid.

Now it seems that stray dogs are more valuable than homeless people in Armenia.

Yerevan's Mayor Office and "Yerevan Fund" have allocated only 25-30 million drams ($60,572 -$72,687) for resolving the problems of homeless people, while 220 million drams ($533,038) has been allocated to eradicate stray dogs.

The Armenian media called this "state's concern about stray dogs" an outrageous injustice.

"The Mayor Office spends lots of money to cope with the stray dogs because they get much benefit from the project but regarding the homeless people they remain indifferent because it seems that investing in projects to resolve homeless people's problems has no benefit for the officials," the media said.

Armenia seems on the verge of human crisis. The country runs the risk of facing social protests. Indifference of the government to resolve the problems could lead to larger crisis for the country.


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