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Displaced from the war. The story of Melania

Melanya Melkumyan has been living in Artsakh for four years, got married and moved from Yerevan to Martakert. She has a young daughter, a loving husband and a good family. However, as in the lives of thousands of other families, everything in their lives was divided into “before the war, after the war”. And the photos provided to us are from his previous happy life…


“At 07.20 on the morning of September 27th, the bombardment started right above our house. Our house is very close to the positions. We immediately took the baby from the crib and went down to the first floor, but my husband said that since the house was made of soil and wood, it would not be safe. He told us to go to the barn, but then we realized that it would not be safe there either a decision was made to come to Yerevan. I managed to take absolutely nothing with me – no baby clothes, no water and milk, nothing. When we reached the Getavan settlement near Drmbon, just a few meters before us, a Smerch projectile exploded on the way, we were miraculously saved. “There was a two-month-old baby in the car and my two-year-old daughter” says Melanya.


It was impossible to continue that way, so they stay in the house of strangers that day, until they understand what to do next, because they receive information that the road leading to Vardenis is closed, only the road through Goris was left to come to Yerevan.


Already in Yerevan, as soon as the first shock passed, household issues arose: baby clothes, shoes, hygiene items, etc. Melanya calls an organization, whose volunteers respond immediately, bringing clothes and shoes, showing great care. In addition, acquaintances and friends help the mother and daughter not to worry about anything here.


In Yerevan, they were accommodated in their aunt’s one-room house, but a day later about 10 people, women and children, came from Hadrut and tried to fit in that room. She says ths it was difficult to live in a room with so many people and small children, so she appealed to the organization to, if possible, place her in a hotel. Thus, she moved to one of the holiday homes in Tsakhkadzor, where the people of Artsakh were received, but in the evening, when they wanted her passport to register, she was forced to leave the area, as her place of registration was in the Republic of Armenia. She did not manage to change the registration after getting married.


As for the program of assistance from Armenia, when Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan wrote on his page that each person evacuated from Artsakh will receive 68 thousand AMD, only two days later Melanya found out that it is not so, the opposite.


“It turned out that not everyone who was evacuated from Artsakh could use that support, as there are many restrictions. In our specific case, it turns out that while my husband is at the front, and I am here with my child, I stop being what I really am, or I and the child are deprived of that 68 thousand AMD. They recommended to write a letter to Minister of Labor and Social Affairs, present the situation, maybe it will be a benefit… this is another manifestation of irony, ridicule, humiliation that we have to live after so much mental and physical suffering, during which I have lost many friends, relatives and acquaintances in the war…They are many,” our interlocutor says angrily.


The child, however, receives a one-time financial support, at the moment she has filled in the application with her husband’s passport, because she does not have a registration in Artsakh, but this is also a problem, as her husband should personally get it, which makes it difficult, as he is currently in a military service. So, our interlocutor repeated, she just does not know what to do and why, after seeing so much pain and problems, she and dozens of people like her should face this.


As for returning to Artsakh, their village, Martakert, was left to the Armenians, but they lost their mother’s village, Mets Tagher of Hadrut, where her grandmother’s house is. This, she says, is a real tragedy, both her mother and the aunts take this reality very seriously, they cry every day, but they understand that it is impossible to bring it all back.


Full text in Armenian

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