By Vic Gerami
Special to the Mirror-Spectator
VANADZOR, Armenia – The Aznavour Foundation, founded by the great French-Armenian singer, actor, and humanitarian and his son, Nicolas Aznavour, continuous the artist’s legacy with various projects around Armenian and Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh).
It just opened a brand new physical and psychological rehabilitation center within the Vanadzor Medical Center, located in Lori Province, for the veterans who were injured in last year’s attack by Azerbaijan that took the lives of almost 5,000 Armenians and left over 10,000 injured. The Foundation held a press conference on October 20 to make the announcement which included the participation of Armenia’s Minister of Health Anahit Avanesyan, CEO of the Aznavour Foundation Kristina Aznavour, French Ambassador to Armenia Anne Louyot and Director of the Vanadzor Medical Center Vahagn Mkrtchyan.
Until now, there were only two rehabilitation centers in Armenia, one each in the two largest cities of the country, Yerevan and Gyumri. Because of this, thousands of veterans in need of rehab did not have access to proper care due to living in small villages, rural communities, and lack of transportation.
Azerbaijan used illegal and banned weapons during the 44-day assault and ethnic cleansing that it unleashed on the Armenians of Artsakh. These weapons, such as cluster bombs and white phosphorus munitions, caused the loss of limbs and severe brain and spinal cord injuries, which require long-term medical care. The Aznavour Foundation has taken a step to decentralize medical care so people in remote communities can receive treatment.