More signs of increased seismic activity in Armenia

March 22 2004


GYUMRI, MARCH 22, ARMENPRESS: The northern branch of the National
Survey for Seismic Protection (NSSP), situated in the town of Gyumri,
said there are indications of increased seismic activity in Armenia’s
northern regions.
Since the start of 2004 it has registered around 200 tremors
against last year’s 30 minor tremors. Slight tremors are still being
registered following a January 16 earthquake ranging from 3-4 on the
Richter Scale in the Armenian marzes of Lori, Shirak and Tavush.
These tremors though being of small size, are registered several
times a day. The epicenter is north-west of Spitak, the scene of a
destructive earthquake in 1988 that razed to ground the north of
Armenia killing at least 25,000 people. Another hub of the increased
seismic activity is near the resort town of Jermuk, some 150 km south
of Yerevan. however, experts claim these tremors are only of
discharging nature posing no threat.
In the wake of a powerful earthquake that hit the Iranian city of
Bam killing thousands of people the chairman of the Armenian
Association of Seismologists and Earth Physics, Sergey Balasanian,
warned that the earthquake in Iran would cause a high seismic
activity in the next 12 months in the whole region including Armenia.
“There is a clear indication of a new wave of seismic activity
traveling across the region,” Sergey Balasanian announced, however
his warnings were turned down by NSSP specialists, who cautioned that
such announcements have to be done very careful not to spread a panic
among the population.