STEPANAKERT (ArmRadio)—On Jan. 22 Artsakh President Bako Sahakian, accompanied by the Republic’s leadership, visited St. Jacob Church in the capital, Stepanakert, and took part in a requiem mass in memory of the Karabakh Defense Army’s Junior Sergeant Armen Hovhannisyan who heroically perished while rebuffing an attack by Azerbaijani subversive subdivisions, the President’s press office reported.
On behalf of the people of Artsakh, President Sahakian expressed deep condolences to Hovhannisyan’s family on the irretrievable loss of the young soldier.
According to the President, Armen Hovhannisyan and his brothers in arms demonstrated extreme devotion to the Fatherland and utmost mastery of military science, once again proving that the Artsakh Republic’s armed forces are able to oppress any act of enemy’s aggression.
President Sahakian considered Azerbaijan’s behavior highly destructive and terrorist in nature, underlining that it was a serious blow to the maintenance of stability and peace in the region and the efforts of the international community directed towards the settlement of the Karabakh conflict.
The Junior Sergeant Armen Hovhannisyan was buried on January 22 in the Yerablur Pantheon accompanied by an honorary escort and military orchestra and thousands of people.
The burial service of the hero was attended by the Minister of Defense of Armenia Seyran Ohanyan, the Vice Speaker of the National Assembly Eduard Sharmazanov, and other political and public figures.
It was reported that simultaneous attacks by Azerbaijani armed groups were recorded between 11:50 pm and 12:15 am on January 19-20 in the north-eastern (Jraberd) and south-eastern (Korgan) regions of the Karabakh-Azerbaijani border. The frontline units of the Armed Forces of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic responded to the attack and started an organized defense in both directions. The enemy was pushed back, suffering palpable human and material losses, according to military authorities. Junior Sergeant Armen L. Hovhannisyan died from the wounds he received during the exchange of fire in the north-eastern region.
On Jan. 20 Artsakh Republic President Bako Sahakian posthumously awarded the Artsakh Defense Army’s N Division’s Junior Sergeant Armen Hovhannisyan with the Republic’s Medal of Courage for bravery shown while defending his country. An investigation has been launched to reveal the details of the incident.