“The nation is not broken, guys… My blood is not redder than theirs, who died. May God not let that spilled blood be in vain, guys,” with these words, Major Mkrtich Harutyunyan, Mgro of Special Squad, encouraged the squad under his command.
According to Mkrtich Harutyunyan’s father, Armen Harutyunyan, his son chose the path of the military, with the principle of protecting the homeland until his last breath. The special squad did just that: he did not spare his life to protect the borders of the motherland in the direction of Tegh village.
“The Azerbaijani army, which came forward, together with the corps commander, had decided to improve their positions. They came, they told us you should go back. Mkrtich said it is you who should go back; you have entered our territory. There was a clash over the position for two days. According to the boys, the position is ours today; they are holding it.
One of them says that he did not allow the commander of the corps to negotiate: he thought that they would shoot him, and said: ‘Who are these people that you should negotiate with them?’ The corps tried to hold back Mkrtich, but they were both shot at,” Mkrtich’s father tells in a conversation with Forrights.am.
Despite his higher education, Mkrtich Harutyunyan decides to serve in the Armenian army. After the 44-day war, he was awarded the rank of major for his valiant service and glorious combat path and two years later he was appointed to the position of commander of the officer battalion of the Special Forces military unit. The unit led by him carried out brilliant operations in Ishkhanasar during the September 2022 battles.
Mgro of Special Squad was one of the pioneers in destroying the enemy’s forces, preventing their advance, taking back captured positions, and evacuating wounded comrades from enemy-controlled areas. “My grandfather told me that, in Western Armenia [historic Armenia for millenia, now under Turkish control], Mkrtich was called Mgro for short, but here his friends called him Mko. He used Mgro as his codename. Every service in the army has its own difficulties, but the spy is a little different, has different combat tasks — taking a position, taking out a wounded friend, etc.” says the father.
“Mgro a devotee to the army and the motherland,” says the father and notes that his son was always interested in the problems of his soldiers and protected them like his own sons. The combat friends of Armen Harutyunyan’s son told that, on April 11, 2023, Major Harutyunyan took a key part in the negotiations and combat operations with the enemy in the village of Tegh.
“One of the Azerbaijanis hit and injured one of his boys and they became angry because there was an agreement not to shoot but to negotiate peacefully,” the father says.
The father has almost no information about his son’s activities. Army-related questions addressed to Mkrtich Harutyunyan of the Special Squad have always remained unanswered. The father says that he did not tell anything about the service, but they understood that he was carrying out important mission.
“Sometimes he was gone for 15-20 days. When I asked my daughter-in-law, she used to say that he must have gone somewhere. After a few months, when I was talking with the boys, I understood that he went somewhere and did something, but he didn’t say what.
He did not want to talk about military topics, he did not want to tell. Later, I heard from different people that he performed complex actions. After his death, slowly people started to tell. His combat friends say that he has completed any kind of tasks since the Four-Day War. They pushed back the Azerbaijani army that came to Talish. In the 44-day war, from the first day to the end, they performed tasks in various combat positions under the command of the national hero, commander Vahagn Asatryan. They were in Jermuk, Ishkhanasar… But he was a secretive person, he didn’t tell. When I asked something, he answered: ‘Leave the military issues aside’. His friends and commanders tell about his heroism, about how many corpses he brought out of inaccessible places, risking his life. He was the author of several actions; he organized them, they brought positions back,” says the father.
Mkrtich was a lawyer by profession, he was trained as a special forces officer in more than a dozen countries. Mkrtich Harutyunyan received offers of safe and high-paying jobs many times, but he refused them.
“Once they offered him a job with a higher salary from another place, he said, I will not leave my boys and go: half of them are injured, half of them are disabled, how can I leave them and go?” He got angry with me because I said the salary was high, to which he answered: ‘If you don’t fight, I don’t fight, what should we do then?’ There was a lot of patriotism in him.”
Mkrtich Harutyunyan had the goal of becoming a general of the Armenian army, which remained unfulfilled. However, Mgro’s patriotism is eternal. Major Harutyunyan was killed on April 11 while defending the borders of Tegh village.
Mkrtich Harutyunyan was married and has two daughters.