During the 44-day war, as a result of the order of lieutenant colonel Andranik Veranyan, 17 soldiers were killed and one was seriously injured. One of the victims is Hrach Mahtesyan. He was from the city of Maralik, Shirak region. He had not completed his 10 months of military service when he was transferred from Meghri to Artsakh and participated in combat operations.
It should be noted that, according to the Prosecutor’s Office, on October 9, 2020, Lieutenant Colonel Veranyan received an order to transfer the personnel of the military unit from Horadis region to Til village. In Ishkhanadzor, they heard the sound of an unmanned aerial vehicle, but the lieutenant colonel ordered to get into the car and continue the journey. 5 minutes later the UAV hit the car.
“They received an order to move to another place and boarded the “Ural” [the truck]. As soon as they reached Ishkhanadzor, there was a police station there, they informed that the air was not “clear”. They were told to get down from the cars, they listened to the police and got down and protected themselves from the UAV. They were really followed by an UAV. Andranik Veranyan came and asked why they came down. The platoon commander Nikoghosyan Taron reported that there was an unmanned aerial vehicle, but he said: “No, get up and move, the UAV is not your problem; it is the problem of air defense.” The troops were forced to get into the car and move. They didn’t even go 300 meters and the UAV hit,” said Hrach Mahtesyan’s mother, Almast Harutyunyan.
According to her, only one soldier survived the UAV attack. “17 people were killed. The lieutenant colonel came and saw that the child was burning alive and ran away; he did not even help the wounded. The head of the village of Ishkhanasar helped the wounded, he himself took the wounded to Goris, after which they were taken to Yerevan,” she said.
Almast Harutyunyan spoke to her son for the last time on that day. “On October 9, he called at 2 o’clock. We never spoke long. The phone was always switched off. We had agreed that he should turn the phone on periodically, so that a messagr would come that the subscriber is available, so that I would know that he was alive. We talked for an hour that day. He said at the end:
“Mom dear, listen to what I’m saying: you have Ando, others don’t have even it, pleae take good care of Ando”. Ando is his brother. I asked: “Hrach, what do you mean to say?” He said, “Nothing; I know that you are strong”. This is what happened,” said the mother.
It should be noted that a court hearing is underway in this case. In the near future, we will write about the course of the court session.