MIA Azatamartik Remembrance Day in Armenia Date in the current year: June 29, 2024

MIA Azatamartik Remembrance Day in Armenia MIA Azatamartik Remembrance Day in Armenia is observed on June 29. This solemn remembrance day honors volunteers who enlisted and went MIA during the Nagorno-Karabakh War, an ethnic and territorial conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan that lasted from 1988 to 1994.

Nagorno-Karabakh, also known as Artsakh, is a landlocked region in the South Caucasus. The first Armenian-Azerbaijani War over Nagorno-Karabakh was fought in 1918. The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict began to escalate again during the Perestroika and reached its peak after the dissolution of the Soviet Union.

The Nagorno-Karabakh War began in 1988, but full-scale fighting erupted in 1992. On June 29, 1992, Azerbaijani troops surrounded the Armenian volunteer detachment Arabo near the town of Askeran. As a result, about 80 Armenian volunteers were killed and another 80 were recognized as missing in action, although Armenia subsequently acknowledged that they had been killed, too.

In total, about 1000 military volunteers from Armenia and the partially recognized Republic of Artsakh are considered MIA. Their memory is honored on MIA Azatamartik Remembrance Day. The Armenian word “azatamartik” can be roughly translated as “freedom fighter”, it is used to refer to volunteer participants of the Nagorno-Karabakh War.

MIA Azatamartik Remembrance Day was first celebrated on June 29, 2000. On this day, a solemn flower-laying ceremony takes place at the Yerablur military cemetery in Yerevan. Since 1988, this cemetery has become the burial place of Armenian soldiers who were killed during the Nagorno-Karabakh War.

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MIA Azatamartik Remembrance Day in Armenia, holidays in Armenia, remembrance days in Armenia, Nagorno-Karabakh War