Friday, April 15, 2011

No "Millennium Challenge" For You!

Part of my lobbying efforts after the March 1 events was to urge the US Secretary of State Condy Rice to stop the Millennium Challenge funding of the Armenian projects. The rationale behind it was that there are two places where you can hit Serj Sargsian and his oligarchic banditocracy. One of them is their pockets (the other one being the body parts that Robert Kocharian knows prevent a male from becoming a good dancer).

Well, the road building funding was stopped as a result of March 1. The Armenian government claimed that they did not need no stinking American funds and would finance the project themselves. They consequently were unable to finance this.

The other one was the irrigation project that continued. The US government deemed it necessary to the security of the people and I could see that point of view even if the money went into the pockets of Serj Sargsian's oligarchs.

Well, the irrigation project has come to an end and here is what the US ambassador has told the Armenian government:

“Perhaps at some point in the future, there might be a possibility,” she said. “Every year, every country is reviewed for eligibility. At this point, Armenia is not eligible for a second compact due to where it stands on the [MCA] indicators. [...] As Armenia enters into an election cycle, with parliamentary elections next year and presidential elections the year after, there is an opportunity to boost these indicators. [...] Obviously, conduct on the day of elections is an important thing but so is freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, the many other things that go into general good governance.”

See Radio Liberty's coverage on this.

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