Karabakh Kicks Off Independence Celebrations
STEPANAKERT (Combined Sources)—The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic will mark twenty four years since its independence proclamation from Azerbaijan on Wednesday, September 2, known as the Day of Artsakh, and Stepanakert has marked the milestone with a series of events and ceremonies in honor of those who have contributed to the development of Artsakh.
President Bako Sahakian hosted a ceremony commemorating the anniversary of Karabakh’s independence proclamation at his residence on Tuesday, September 1.
In a speech delivered at the ceremony, Sahakian noted that the Day of the Artsakh Republic was among select holidays that have been carved by the entire Armenian nation.
Sahakian said that it has been twenty four years since the people of Artsakh, hand-in-hand with their sisters and brothers from Armenia and the Diaspora, began building a free and sovereign democratic state, which has sustainably marched ahead, marking new successes and achievements each year, and occupying its deserved place in the international community.
“The Artsakh people are masters of their motherland and do their best to reach their goal, [and] to realize the unfinished goals of their brave sons,” Sahakian said in his speech.
Primate of the Artsakh Diocese of the Armenian Apostolic Church Archbishop Pargev Martirossyan, Nagorno-Karabakh Republic National Assembly Chairman Ashot Ghoulyan and other officials participated in the event.
President Sahakian also signed decrees conferring state awards and honorary titles to individuals who have served Artsakh.
For exclusive bravery and personal courage shown during the defense of the motherland, one individual was awarded with the “Battle Cross Order” of the second degree.
For personal courage shown during the battles for the defense of the motherland, three individuals, one of them posthumously, were awarded the “For Courage” medal.
For contribution to the defense of the motherland as well as for courage shown during service, 129 individuals, two of them posthumously, were awarded the “For Service in Battle” medal.
For services rendered to the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, one individual was decorated with the “Mesrop Mashtots” Order, eight individuals were awarded with the “Vachagan Barepasht” medal, one individual was decorated with the “Mkhitar Gosh” medal, and 23 individuals, one of them posthumously, were awarded with the “Gratitute” medal.
For substantial contributions to the development of science, culture and art, NKR Honorary titles were conferred to a group of individuals.
Commemoration events ended on September 1 with a staging of Gieuseppe Verdi’s “Requiem” opera in Stepanakert’s Revival Square. President Sahakian and President of the Republic of Armenia Serzh Sarkissian both attended the performance.
Sahakian noted with satisfaction that the staging of various performances in Artsakh with renowned international stars has become a tradition, and demonstrates that Artsakh is now a significant regional cultural center.
Archbishop Martirosyan, Chairman Ghoulyan, Prime Minister Arayik Haroutyunyan, high ranking officials from Artsakh and Armenia, representatives from the Diaspora and other foreign officials attended Tuesday night’s performance.