Armenia can hardly handle one calamity at a time but a rapid succession of disastrous occurrences is shaking the country to its core.
The closure of the Lachin corridor by Azerbaijan with its ensuing humanitarian consequences had left the Armenian nation reeling from Yerevan to the remote corners of the diaspora. We were in a national dialogue to find out a solution to the blockade and help the 120,000 Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh) to survive. Before even solving that crisis, Armenia was hit by another catastrophe: the fire that broke out on January 19 in the army engineer sniper company of the military unit in Azat village in the province of Gegharkunik.
Details have been coming out on a daily and even hourly basis, along with the blame game as to who was the responsible party.
Fifteen soldiers died and three others hospitalized. It is believed that a total of 21 soldiers were stationed there and three escaped to safety. Therefore, there are live witnesses to give testimony to help with the investigation.
Rather than coming together and grieving the losses, the majority of the people in Armenia are in a rush to judgement; unfortunately, the calamity has become only an excuse for many people to air their views along the lines of their biases.
For the opposition, this seems to be a golden opportunity to lay the blame on the doorstep of the ruling party and ask for the resignation of Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and Defense Minister Suren Papikyan, as if that would solve any problem, while the enemy is on the borders and encroaching on Armenia’s sovereign territory day by day, with complete disregard for criticism and a call for restraint from many international capitals.