by Karina Manukyan
By Armenian Culture Minister Hasmik Poghosyan's order, cultural and historical monuments and museums can no longer be leased out until the relevant procedures are formed.
The press service of the Culture Ministry reports that the order followed the state non-commercial organizations' violation of the relevant agreements and legislative provisions.
To recall, on June 20 Director of the Zvartnots Historical-Cultural Museum-Reserve V. Grigoryan was fired over carelessness, with Head of the Service for Protection of the Historical-Cultural Museum-Reserves in Armenia Vardan Poghosyan being roundly rebuked. The Ministry of Culture reported that a private company organized a corporate party in the area of the Reserve, but failed to fulfill all the provisions in the appropriate agreements. These days a similar incident happened at the Garni Cultural - Historical Reserve. Tourists had not been allowed to visit the popular sight for several days, as the Central Bank of Armenia planned a corporate party in the areas of the Garni Temple and held organizations for the event. Earlier, Vardan Poghosyan, the Head of the Service for Protection of the Historical-Cultural Museum- Reserves in Armenia, told ArmInfo that the law does not prohibit organizing events in the area of the Garni Temple. According to him, the Ministry of Culture has a right to lease the historical monuments under its jurisdiction. "Moreover, the event was, inherently, advertising the ancient historical monument," Poghosyan said and added that even a historical monument can be closed for tourists at least for a day in a month. He said that the Central Bank paid 1,120,000 drams for organization of the corporate party in the area of the temple.