“I was looking back from the positions and seeing the smoking kindergarten. We didn’t want to leave, but children and women were in danger, what were we to do?”, Aram Petrosyan recalls in a conversation with Forrights.am, while talking about the war of September 19. He was the senior of the 32nd position of the city of Martuni, militia.

The 25-year-old soldier does not come to terms with the reality of laying down his arms and leaving Artsakh. “We would have fought if there was help,” says Aram and notes that the enemy had concentrated a disproportionate force in the Martuni foothills. One soldier from Artsakh was fighting against 20 soldiers of the enemy.

“The fight started with 10 of us in the position. We were too few to fight. I can tell from what I saw that if there was help, we would have fought, but we were 10 against 200; it was an unequal battle.” The position led by Aram shelled the enemy from the right and left sides. In a short time, the Azeris reached the position and took it under siege.

“They entered our post at four o’clock; we retreated. They hit with projectiles and shot long, long time. Two tanks were shooting directly at us. You couldn’t take your head off to see what’s going on,” Aram recalls.

The mayor of Martuni Aznavour Saghyan and two other people came to the aid of the militia. The mayor was killed while defending Martuni. In this direction, the Armenian side had six victims and one wounded. Aram assures about hundreds of victims of the hostile side. “We have information that the Azerbaijanis had 500 casualties in the direction of Martuni and Chartar,” says the participant of the war, adding that as a result of the struggle, they were able to prevent the entry of the Azerbaijani military to Martuni until the children, women and elderly were taken out, which was achieved.

The military of Artsakh fought until the last chance. Arman says that as a result of the nine-month blockade, there were many material problems, but they overcame them. Already on September 19, the Azerbaijani side sent a large number of troops and equipment in the direction of Martuni.

“They were rising in the part of Martun called Kohak. We called and reported that the situation was tense. They came on foot and climbed to their positions in the direction of our positions. At half past two, the first shell hit my position; the camera broke. Whatever was in the position was destroyed. Half of us remained on this side of the post, and half on that side. We fought until the end, but the boys died…”, while talking about the heavy loss of his fellow soldiers, Aram chooses the sentence “Our crew was like a family” and adds with a deep sigh: “The posts were handed over; we got off. We were trying not to get any casualties when leaving.”

Arman is thinking of resuming his work and continuing to serve his motherland. He is not thinking about emigration: he has only one direction to leave Armenia: Artsakh direction. “I don’t want to think about anything else. I hope that one day I will return to Artsakh. I will not leave Armenia, this too is my homeland, the only place I will go from Armenia is Artsakh,” he said.

Narek Kirakosyan

Narek Kirakosyan

Narek Kirakosyan is a journalist, works on the principle of "a person is an absolute value".

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