“Pavel, will they take you to the army too?”
“Mom, I am not better than anybody else. Every one of them has a mother. Do n ot worry; if I go, you still have two loving and devoted sons.”
Pavel Sahakyan assured his mother that if he did not call, it would mean that there was a problem with the connection; they would not take him.
Pavel is one of the 17 soldiers who burned in the “Ural” military vehicle on October 9 in the area of Ishkhanadzor.
“Paul was my eldest son. We also have two sons and a daughter. He finished school and entered the Agrarian University. He was thinking about studying programming after returning from the army.”
Mihran Sahakyan, Pavel’s father, says that his son was engaged in karate․ He had received many medals and belts. Pavel served in Etchmiadzin for six months, then was moved to Meghri. According to the parents, their son did not have any problems in the army, he even said that the soldiers are like a family.
Pavel did not tell his parents that they were being transferred to Artsakh. He always said that they were in the warehouses of the Meghri military unit, sending weapons and food to Artsakh. The parents later found out that the boy had been in Jabrayil since October 3. Then they moved to Tili village, where the incident took place.
“It turns out that our children died because of Veranyan. Before he [Veranyan] came, the children were ordered to get out of the car and take shelter. But then Veranyan came and ordered them to get into the car and move. I was working in Abovyan; they called me from the village and said, ‘You can come to Hoktemberyan’s morgues’, but at first, I was not told that something had happened to Pavel. Then my cousin said, ‘Pavel is no more․ Look, see, maybe you can recognize the face’. But our children were completely burned. We did not see their bodies: they showed me pictures, I told them that Pavel was not there,” says Pavel’s father.
Later, one of the frineds of the family called and said that such an incident had taken place but Pavel was able to get out of the car and escape. The family members last spoke with Pavel on October 8, the day before the incident.
“I was given the bread truck’s license plate number; they said that he was to take bread for the boys. I called and asked him to call me once he was with them so that I coul hear Pavelis’s voice.
He promised to call and said that he had seen Pavel. But later it turned out that he was lying. I called at 6 pm, he said, ‘the children will come down from the posts, I will call you then, you will talk to him’. He did not call anyway, and he did not answer my calls. I went to Meghri, one of their commanders said that all the children had died,” the father added.
The parents want the commander to receive the punishment he deserves.
“He does not approach us; they avoid us. I do not know why he gave such an order, he acted carelessly. I personally will fight until the end so that he gets the punishment he deserves,” Mihran Sahakyan concluded.
Pavel’s mother says that her son was very attached to her. According to the mother, the son had many dreams․ He had plans to study computer programming.
“He did not tell me that they took him to Artsakh. When I asked, ‘Pavel, can they take you there too?, he answered, ‘Mom, you know that I wuld not lye to you. But this one time, he did lye to me…
During the last conversation with her son, Pavel said that they were busy, because they were loading food to send to Artsakh. The mother says that her son has always been happy with the service.
“He never complained. He had many goals, he was a boy full of life. There were 3 months left until the end of the military service. In January 2020, he came on vacation and said that he would not come again, he had a year left. We could not see Pavel also because of the infection [COVID].