Armenia still los­ing sol­diers in non-com­bat con­di­tions

Azer News - - Karabakh Conflict - By Rashid Shiri­nov

Not a sin­gle month passes with­out deaths of Ar­me­nian sol­diers in non-com­bat con­di­tions, both in the mil­i­tary units in Armenia it­self and those lo­cated in the oc­cu­pied lands of Azerbaijan.

The lat­est death oc­curred on May 26, when the body of cap­tain Amayak Hakobyan with a pen­e­trat­ing gun­shot wound in the chest area was found in a mil­i­tary unit of Armenia.

The lo­cal me­dia re­ports note that a foren­sic med­i­cal ex­am­i­na­tion has been ap­pointed and in­ves­tiga­tive mea­sures are be­ing taken to clar­ify all the cir­cum­stances of the sol­dier’s death.

It is note­wor­thy that this is the 18th death in the Ar­me­nian army over the re­cent months. The pre­vi­ous one oc­curred in non-com­bat con­di­tions in the Armenia-oc­cu­pied ter­ri­to­ries of Azerbaijan. The body of an Ar­me­nian sol­dier Ham­let Grig­o­ryan with a through bul­let wound in the lower jaw was found in a mil­i­tary unit on May 20.

A sim­i­lar case hap­pened on May 6, when the body of an Ar­me­nian ser­vice­man Levon Torosyan was found in a mil­i­tary unit in North-East Armenia. The In­ves­tiga­tive Com­mit­tee claims this was a sui­cide, but the sol­dier’s fam­ily does not be­lieve in this ver­sion.

Ex­pert of the Peace Di­a­logue or­ga­ni­za­tion Ruben Mar­tirosyan also de­nied this ver­sion im­me­di­ately af­ter the au­topsy. He found ob­vi­ous facts of mur­der, such as par­al­lel scratches on the el­bows, which emerged si­mul­ta­ne­ously, and bruis­ing on the gen­i­tals.

Yet an­other case oc­curred on the night of May 4, when the body of a 20-year-old mil­i­tary ser­vice­man Arthur Gas­paryan with a gun­shot wound in the mouth was found at the com­bat po­si­tion of a mil­i­tary unit in North-East Armenia. Later, the In­ves­tiga­tive Com­mit­tee opened a crim­i­nal case un­der the ar­ti­cle “In­cite­ment to sui­cide.”

How­ever, the crim­i­nal case was fur­ther de­vel­oped and as a re­sult, master sergeant of a de­fen­sive post where Gas­paryan served was charged un­der the ar­ti­cle “In­sult of a ser­vice­man.”

“The foren­sic med­i­cal ex­am­i­na­tion was ap­pointed and nec­es­sary in­ves­tiga­tive and other pro­ce­dural ac­tions are con­ducted to es­tab­lish the ser­vice­man’s death cir­cum­stances and check pos­si­ble ver­sions,” the state­ment reads.

How­ever, Armenia’s pop­u­la­tion no longer be­lieves in the state­ments of the gov­ern­ment bod­ies, which present dozens of mur­ders in the Ar­me­nian army as sui­cides.

Var­i­ous hu­man rights ac­tivists in Armenia note that haz­ing of con­scripts has a strik­ingly vi­o­lent form in the coun­try’s army. Sol­diers who have un­der­gone more than six­month ser­vice bully new con­scripts, while those in their last six months are re­garded as ‘se­nior’ sol­diers, who en­joy var­i­ous priv­i­leges, in­clud­ing im­mu­nity from such a treat­ment.

Thus, some Ar­me­nian sol­diers com­mit sui­cides be­cause of be­ing bul­lied in army, while oth­ers die be­cause of be­ing se­verely beaten and shot by their fel­low sol­diers. This was com­mon dur­ing the 10-year rule of Sargsyan in Armenia, and now Pashinyan and the new de­fense min­is­ter of Armenia will have to carry out se­ri­ous re­forms in the coun­try’s armed forces in or­der to stop th­ese ter­ri­ble deaths.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Azerbaijan

© PressReader. All rights reserved.