Armenia is a safe area for a hungry and tormented Artsakh citizen who has lived under blockade for months, where there is state care, there is at least food, there are people who help in every way.

However, here he appears on the edge of the social abyss, joining the poorest class of the Republic of Armenia people.

From the very first days of immigration, the state announced that 100,000 drams [about $250] would be provided to every Artsakh resident. To receive the help, they only need to have a bank card, which is given free of charge for displaced Artsakh residents.

Identification is not registration

About 20 days have passed, but many have not received the 100 thousand yet. According to the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, about 55,000 Artsakh citizens were provided with one-time assistance.

The rest are still waiting. From November on, 40,000 + 10,000 will be provided to each displaced person for utility expenses, regardless of their age. The funds will be given for six months.

But this program is implemented with strict limitations. In the relevant decision of the government, it is written that this aid cannot be received by those who are absent from Armenia, persons who are registered in the state population register, those who live in the areas provided free of charge by the state, and those who have a residential area in Armenia.

The second point, which concerns not being registered in Armenia, means that those Artsakh citizens who will be registered in Armenia will not be able to use the money provided by the government. In other words, in order to receive the support of the state, a citizen of Artsakh must, figuratively speaking, be a person hanging in the air.

The spokesperson of the Ministry of Social Affairs clarifies: “All those who use this aid program have registration and accounting in Nagorno-Karabakh, and they undergo identification by the Republic of Armenia in the migration service. In other words, they must be identified by the migration service, but not registered in the Republic of Armenia.”

Identification is not registration. In other words, everything is done so that Artsakh residents do not become legal residents of the Republic of Armenia, do not have status, even though they have a passport of a Republic of Armenia citizen.

The relatives of the soldiers who died in Artsakh will receive compensation from the fund, but it is not known when.

Today it became clear that, as a result of the large-scale Azerbaijani attack on Artsakh on September 19, there are more than 200 victims among the military and more than two dozen among citizens. Hunan Tadevosyan, spokesperson of the Artsakh Ministry of Internal Affairs, conveyed this to Azatutyun [Radio Liberty].

Colonel Alexander Avetisyan, the head of the Social Protection Department of the Ministry of Defense, who is involved in the coordination of issues related to the fund, informed that the families of servicemen who died during the recent battles in Artsakh, just like RA citizens, can receive compensation from the “Servicemen’s Insurance Fund”, but it will take time. The related paperwork is not completed. So far, the Servicemen’s Social Protection Department does not have the necessary information about the dead servicemen.

Probably, the reason is that the search for the dead and missing servicemen and civilians continues.

“Yes, they will receive compensation. Previously, the government of the Republic of Artsakh was involved in the administration: they collected the cases and sent them to the “Servicemen’s Insurance Fund”. Now that process will be carried out by the RA Ministry of Defense, our department, but information still needs to be collected. We are waiting for the conclusions of the investigative committee. The circumstance of being a victim must be confirmed, then it must be verified under what conditions the given soldier died. This is important information for the Fund. For example, he may have been killed not at the place of duty, but let’s say, while escaping from duty. There are such subtleties. But in any case, after getting the relevant information and coordination, they will definitely become beneficiaries of the Fund,” Alexander Avetisyan replied to’s inquiry.

Meanwhile, rumors are spreading among displaced Artsakh people that the Fund will not give anything to the families of Artsakh servicemen who died during the last bloody battles of September. They have many questions to the state.

No college accepts Karine Yesayan’s daughter

Karine Yesayan’s husband, Arayik Shekyan, died on September 19, at position number 707. The last time she spoke with her husband was on the 18th of the month, in the evening. There has been no connection since the morning: no internet, no phone. Karine did not know that a war had started. “My husband was a soldier. His name is registered in the Ministry of Defense, [as well as the fact] that he was killed in the positions. He has participated in all wars from the 90s until now.”

Karine’s husband was buried in Stepanakert. “The next day, we were told that we all have to leave; the people are being evacuated. if I had known, if they would had told me a day earlier that this would happen, I would not have buried him; I would have brought his body with me to Yerablur,” the woman regrets.

Karine with her four children is now in a rented house in Kanaker. The husband was the only working hand. Until now, the only help she received was hygiene items and food from the Red Cross. She does not know what will happen next, how she will live.

She has just received the paper, the death certificate from the Stepanakert morgue, from the autopsy doctor. She has not managed to collect her husband’s documents yet. “I don’t know if there will be compensation or not, but I am collecting the papers now and will hand them over. The rest will be seen. My husband was a soldier, always in posts, in positions. What difference did it make, whether he was an army or a military cadre, whether he was from Armenia or Artsakh? It would be fair if they didn’t differentiate between families,” says Karine.

But the universal principle of justice is violated at every step. Karine’s daughter studied in the 9th grade in Artsakh. “We do not have a document. And now no educational institution accepts the child. We went to several colleges; they sent us back. What do they think, I’m lying that my child is a college student? She finished the 9th grade, then we ran away… There is no high school nearby,” says the woman. She directed an online letter to the Ministry of Education. She will go after the answer on Monday.

“I didn’t open the body to look; I couldn’t…”

Little is known about the circumstances of the death of Alvard Baghramyan’s son, Bogdan. But what she knows will torment her for the rest of her life. “The fight has started and he has died during the night. The body remained in the water for a week… pierced with a knife, in the river. The Turks killed and threw him into the river. My child left on the 19th, and that’s it! On Friday, the 18th, he got down from the position, then an alarm was called, and the next day he left again,” the woman tells, crying, barely pronouncing the words, crying. This nightmare will remain with her forever: how her son fell into the hands of the Turks alive. “I didn’t open the body, I couldn’t… the child came with his name and surname, and that’s how we took him to Yerablur [cemetery].” The family is in one of the villages of Ashtarak region. The host is one of the son’s friends who gave them his house.

Alvard’s husband has died during the wars. And now, her son went too. As of this moment, there is no working hand in the family.

Syuzan Simonyan

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