YEREVAN – After the jubilation created by Nikol Pashinyan’s election to the office of prime minister, the next day, May 9, Armenians celebrated a triple holiday. This holiday originally was for the victory of the Soviet Union in World War II, which is called the Great Patriotic War here. Armenians made great sacrifices in this war. The commemoration was later broadened to include the liberation of the city of Sushi, Artsakh, from Azerbaijan in 1992, and the formation of the Defense Army of the Artsakh Republic the same year.
Volunteer supporters of Pashinyan’s movement cleaned the Republic Square on May 9, as they did after prior major demonstrations.
The primary celebrations take place in Yerevan and Stepanakert, the capital of Artsakh, during the morning. Nikol Pashinyan participated in the Stepanakert ceremonies. However, events and individual commemorations take place throughout the day throughout Armenia.
At Victory Park in the afternoon, where the statue of Mother Armenia wields her sword in defense of the land, many families and representatives of organizations came to pay their respects to the soldiers who died protecting Armenia. Wreaths were donated by various organizations and state bodies. Pictures of the soldiers, named as heroes and often bearing images of medals they earned, were carried there earlier in the morning on stakes and were left standing against a wall. Afterwards, many visitors went inside the Military Museum of the Armenian Ministry of Defense underneath Mother Armenia to view the exhibits.