Today, under the leadership of Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan, the heroes of the victorious battles in Tavush Province were awarded during a solemn ceremony held at Sardarapat Memorial.
Before granting the high state awards to the servicemen of the Armed Forces of Armenia, Nikol Pashinyan delivered a speech in which he particularly stated the following:
“We have gathered at Sardarapat Memorial (the symbol of the glorious victory that the Armenian people achieved against the Ottoman army) on a special occasion. For the first time in the history of the Republic of Armenia, 55 active servicemen of the Armed Forces have been awarded the second-class Order of the Combat Cross, and 16 servicemen have been awarded the first-class Order of the Combat Cross.
The event is special in that 24 of the recipients are here today and I will have the honor of granting the orders to them, and the other recipients aren’t here because they are currently defending the borders and protecting the security of Armenia. This is not all. For the first time in the history of Armenia, an active serviceman of the Armed Forces will receive the title of National Hero of Armenia.
After a short while, I will grant the Order of the Homeland to Captain Ruben Sanamyan, and tomorrow he will continue his service at his military unit. This is the most important feature of today’s event. Throughout Armenia’s history, most of the first-class Orders of the Combat Cross have been awarded posthumously. All of the National Heroes of Armenia who have fought during the battle for liberation and have been associated with the Armed Forces have been awarded posthumously, and today is the first time in history when the national hero serviceman of Armenia, an officer, will receive the Order of the Combat Cross in person. This event attests to the fact that the acts of the heroes of the battle for the liberation of Artsakh, including Monte Melkonian, Tatul Krpeyan, Movses Gorgisyan, Jivan Abrahamyan, Yura Poghosyan and Vazgen Sargsyan live on and are not just a part of history.
All of the award recipients are active veterans of the victorious battles that were led in Tavush Province in July of this year. The local battles became extremely significant in terms of psychology, politics and geopolitics, and now is an opportune moment to record the outcomes of the victorious battles for Armenia.
The first outcome is that the victorious battles of July crushed the statements that the military-political leadership of Azerbaijan had been making over the past decade, stating that the peaceful settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is only possible through the unilateral concessions of the Armenian side, and they proved that there is no military solution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and Azerbaijan must inevitably adopt constructive approaches.
For the past two years, the Armenian government has been stating that the use of force, threats and coercion against Armenia are not prospective, and the second outcome is that the battles proved that the Armenian government’s statements are credible and that the government’s evaluations of the military-political situation in the region and the ratio of force are precise.
The third outcome is that, thanks to the large-scale reforms that have been taking place in the Armenian Army for the past two-and-a-half years, during the battles in July, Armenia proved that it is capable of ensuring military advantage through innovations in terms of tactics and strategy. Many might not know this, but during the battles in July, there was a unique situation where no serviceman was killed near the bordering military positions and there was only one injured serviceman.
The fourth outcome is that the Armed Forces struck high technological weapons that people thought couldn’t be struck. Few know that those arms were struck with Armenian weapons.
The fifth outcome is that the battles in July showed Armenia’s capability of solving security challenges on its own. Several events that took place during the battles helped specify the scope of threats targeted not only at Armenia, but also the region, and they helped strengthen our confidence in our strategic allies and partners, and this further increases Armenia’s opportunity to play its role of guarantor of peace and stability in the region effectively.
Through the victorious battles in July, Armenia has entered a new stage in history in which Armenia’s military-political weight and significance has grown in the region, but there are also more challenges and a higher sense of responsibility.
And so, long live freedom, long live the Republic of Armenia, long live the Republic of Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh Republic), long live the Armenian Army and long live we and our children who are living in a free, victorious and happy Armenia.”