the word Suicide is unrelated

February 3, 2011

this story I did lately was a difficult to photograph encounter with a woman whose son died while serving in the army. Several months ago many people talked about it on Facebook. The investigation is still in process.

Tikin Hasmik was incredible. We still talk, I had to print a photo of her son Artak for those days when she goes to stand in front of the government building demanding justice. Many people stand there waiting for their sons’ killings to be recognized. The day I went there, there was another strike on the side for having the right to sell stuff outside in the street, or something of this sort. So as I was going there to photograph Hasmik and the other parents, the whole situation was ridiculous as all the journalists were rushing to interview the other people, it was their time.

Two days before that, I was at Tikin Hasmik’s place. A woman awake and completely ready to fight, she felt better and did not cry only when she talked about all the ways she can easily prove that her son did not commit suicide but was killed. When she looked around the room or would show his books, it was much harder for her to take.

So here are some things I wrote up about this wonderful woman, and more in the photos.

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Six months after her son’s death, Hasmik Hovhannisyan still fights for the recognition of her son Artak Nazaryan’s death as killing. In July 2010 Hasmik was told that her son, a lieutenant serving in Mehrab military unit in Tavush marz, had committed suicide.

“When I heard these words, I did not understand them,” Hasmik says, “The word suicide is so unrelated to my son that I could not understand and asked them to repeat what they said.”

The investigation of Artak Nazaryan’s case is in process. “Artak’s forensic medial examination was late for two months,” Hasmik says, “In order to prove the theory of suicide they would have to think deeply.” Artak Nazaryan’s case is one of such several unrevealed cases.


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