The installation of a statue of Jesus Christ on Mount Atis violates the law on the protection of cultural heritage and natural areas, said 16 public and human rights organizations. They doubt the attractiveness of the statue for tourists.
The “Caucasian Knot” reported that on July 16, on the top of Mount Atis, activists held a rally against the erection of the above statue, on the initiative of Gagik Tsarukyan, the leader of the “Prosperous Armenia” party “. The idea was endorsed by Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, who announced that the statue would increase tourist interest in Armenia. Scientists have opposed the idea, while the Armenian Apostolic Church believes the statue is against the tradition of the cult.
The construction of the statue revealed risks of corruption in the alienation of a public space which is a historical monument, as well as the non-transparent activities of the Armenian authorities, the authors of the declaration signed by the Transparency International Anticorruption Center, the Vanadzor Office of the Helsinki Civil Assembly, the Armenian Association of Helsinki and other organizations claim.
“They are destroying not only a natural monument, but also the cultural and historical heritage. There are more than 50 Neolithic, Stone Age and Bronze antiquities on Mount Atis,” said Garegin Miskarianthe initiator of the petition against the construction of the statue.
Asmik Arutyunyanan expert from the NGO “Protection of Rights Without Borders”, said that the authorities had ignored the request of public organizations and continued with the construction.