Displaced Artsakh Residents Demonstrate in Yerevan: Demand Housing
Former Armenian residents of Hadrut, Karvatchar and Shushi, areas in Artsakh now occupied by Azerbaijan, demonstrated outside the Government Building in Yerevan, demanding that the government provide them with housing or land to build on.
Svetlana Abrahamyan moved to Karvatchar with her family from Yerevan in 2004. Abrahamyan taught Russian in the Brajur village school in Artsakh’s Shahumyan District. Last year’s war forced them to move back to Armenia, and they now rent an apartment in Yerevan.
“We never thought this is how we’d end up. We decided that we’d always live there. So what if we weren’t Karvatchar natives? We got accustomed to the place and tied our life and future plans to that place,” she told Hetq.
Mr. and Mrs. Harutyun Kocharyan lived in Karvatchar for eleven years. Both fought in the first and second Karabakh wars. Mrs. Kocharyan was injured in both, partially losing her eyesight.
She told Hetq that when she was discharged from the hospital last year and was told she had five days to pack the family belongings and leave, she went home to find that the place had been looted.
The Harutyunyans now live in a Yerevan dormitory room with Mrs. Harutyunyan’s sister.
Former Hadrut residents told Hetq that a letter they sent to the Armenian government, asking for housing assistance, has not elicited any satisfactory response.
Artur Stepanyan, one of the demonstration organizers, noted in his speech that 2,500 people were displaced from the Hadrut region last year.