ADMINISTRATIVE COURT FINDS PRIOR ANTI-AMULSAR ACTIVITIES OF GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL RAISED SUSPICIONS ON IMPARTIALITY
FORMER HEAD OF ARMENIA’S ENVIRONMENTAL AND MINING INSPECTION BODY FOUND TO HAVE FAILED TO RECUSE HIMSELF FROM CONSIDERING THE MATTER
TORONTO, Oct. 17, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Lydian International Limited (TSX:LYD) (“Lydian” or the “Company”) is pleased to announce that the Administrative Court of Armenia ruled on October 15th in favor of Lydian Armenia, a subsidiary of Lydian, and upheld the Company’s appeal against a Directive of Armenia’s Environmental and Mining Inspection Body (Inspection Body), dated August 27, 2018 preventing any mining related activities at the Amulsar Project (Directive 30-A).
Mr. Artur Grigoryan, former Head of the Inspection Body, directed the Company on August 27, 2018 to refrain from any mining-related activities until the Ministry of Nature Protection conducted a study of ‘new found ecological factors’ alleged by Mr. Grigoryan to have been identified at the Amulsar Project for the first time.
The Administrative Court of Armenia established that the existence of the alleged ecological factors had not been substantiated after independent investigation. The Court also found that Mr. Grigoryan had been actively involved in anti-Amulsar activities prior to his appointment as the Head of the Inspection Body, which raised reasonable doubts on his objectivity. The Court ruled that Mr. Grigoryan failed to recuse himself from considering the matter when required to do so and declared Directive 30-A invalid.
Edward Sellers, Lydian’s Interim President and CEO commented: “We were confident the Armenian Judiciary would confirm that the claims of the former Head of the Inspection Body were unsubstantiated, and the failure to recuse himself in the matter unlawful. This ruling is yet another confirmation that unlawful attempts have been made to interfere with Lydian’s legal right to develop and operate the Amulsar Project. It is regrettable that illegality of action against Lydian has now been found to extend to an official of the Government of Armenia.”
“On August 19, 2019, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan publicly acknowledged that there is no legal basis on which the Government of Armenia can prevent Lydian from advancing the Amulsar Project and it is in the national interest that the Amulsar Project proceed. The Prime Minister also called for the illegal blockaders to open the roads and for Lydian’s access to the Amulsar Project to be restored. The Prime Minister has made similar statements since then on numerous occasions, including while in New York attending the General Assembly of the United Nations. Yet the illegal blockades remain.”
“The Prime Minister has said publicly on more than one occasion that ‘rival mining companies’ and others were supporting the illegal blockaders. It now appears that at least one of those supporters was within the Government of Armenia. The Government of Armenia has allowed continuous illegal blockades of the Amulsar Project since June 2018 and failed since then to enforce court orders upholding Lydian’s legal rights of access. When will the Prime Minister identify who the supporters of illegality against Lydian are, and when will the Prime Minister take steps to enforce the Rule of Law?”
About Lydian International Limited
Lydian is a gold developer focusing on construction at its 100%-owned Amulsar Gold Project, located in south-central Armenia. However, illegal blockades have prevented access to Amulsar since late June 2018. Amulsar is expected to be a large-scale, low-cost operation with production targeted to average approximately 204,000 ounces over a 12-year mine life. Estimated mineral resources contain 3.65 million measured and indicated gold ounces and 1.38 million inferred gold ounces. Lydian is committed to good international industry practices in all aspects of its operations including production, sustainability, and corporate social responsibility. For more information and to directly contact us, please visit www.lydianinternational.co.uk.
For further information, please contact:
|Edward Sellers, Interim President & CEO|
|Bill Dean, Chief Financial Officer|
Caution regarding forward-looking information
Certain information contained in this news release is “forward looking”. All statements in this news release, other than statements of historical fact, that address events, results, outcomes or developments that the Company expects to occur are “forward-looking statements”. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts and are generally, but not always, identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as “plans”, “expects”, “is expected”, “intends”, “anticipates” or variations of such words and phrases or statements that certain actions, events or results “may”, “could”, “will”, “would”, “should”, or “occur” or the negative or other variations of such terms. Forward-looking statements in this news release include, among others, statements with respect to: the ability of the Company to resume construction and/or gain access to the Amulsar Project, of which there can be no assurances; the Company’s ability to restart construction and operate the Amulsar Project; the protestors blocking access to the Amulsar Project opening the roads; the realization of mineral resource estimates and the timing of development of the Amulsar Gold Project; the commitment to and implementation of good international industry practices; the expected gold production from, and life of mine of, the Amulsar Gold Project; and the expected mining methods at the Amulsar Gold Project. Statements concerning mineral resource estimates may also be deemed to constitute forward-looking information to the extent that they involve estimates of the mineralization that will be encountered when the property is developed.
Forward-looking statements are necessarily based on estimates and assumptions that are inherently subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such risks, uncertainties and factors include, without limitation: changes in gold and silver prices; adverse general economic, political, market or business conditions; failure to achieve the objectives of the future exploration and drilling programs; the speculative nature of mineral exploration and development; risks associated with obtaining and maintaining the necessary licenses and permits and complying with permitting requirements, including, without limitation, approval of the Armenian government and receipt of all related permits, authorizations or other rights, regulatory changes; as well as "Risk Factors" included in the disclosure documents filed on and available at www.sedar.com. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance, and actual results and future events could materially differ from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. All of the forward-looking statements contained in this news release are qualified by these cautionary statements. The Company expressly disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, events or otherwise, except in accordance with applicable securities laws.