“The rest of the wars were not like this․ For a moment it seemed to me that it was the end, that there was no Karabakh and there were no Armenians anymore.”

Իրինա Բաբայան

Irina, 46, who survived the war in the Artsakh city of Martakert, would still have stayed in her hometown if her son had not asked her to come to Armenia․

“Until October 23, I was in Martakert with my two sons. I did not come and I would have stayed until the end. My son forced me to come to Armenia, I did not want to, I could not come,” Mrs. Irina managed to bring her thoughts together in a conversation with Forrights.

Recalling the morning of the war, Mrs. Irina described it as “horrendous.”

“It was Sunday morning; everyone was at home. We all jumped up and run out of the houses, although the reasonable thing was to do the opposite. The rest of the wars were not of this degree; they were fought with automatic guns. But today there are different weapons, there were heavier explosions and blasts. For a moment, it seemed to me that it was the end, that there was no Karabakh and there were no Armenians.”

The woman lost her brother Igor on the battlefield. There is information that he died, but they still cannot find his body. The sister, however, has bad feeling that her brother has fallen on the battlefield․

“I feel that he is no more, he is dead, they did not tell us, but I feel it. We were called for DNA test, but so far there is no information, no answer. We are waiting for them to find the body, then we will leave it or take with us, bury it next to our mother, so that it will not be left unwatched.

She left her two sons, 32 and 23 years old, in Artsakh, who are still at the frontline. One of them is married, has two children, the other promised to start a family after the victorious end of the war, but… the mother chose to remain silent about it.

Their house in Martakert is half-ruined today, the doors and windows are damaged, the house was shaken by the wave of blows and ruined․

“The house, my house… but it is OK, I will go back and build it again by myself. I built it years ago, all by myself, so I will restore it again, this time — with my boys, I just need to return sooner…”

Mrs. Irina lost herself when she witnessed the ruins and corpses in Artsakh on her way to Armenia.

“My mental state was disturbed, there is unexplained pain inside me.”

To our question whether she is going to return to Artsakh, Irina gave a positive answer: she will leave only after receiving the DNA answer․

“I want to go back one day soon, because my children are there, my heart and mind are there, I am there.”

Roza Vardanyan