We mark the 29th anniversary of the formation of the RA Armed Forces in its most difficult period since its formation.
The war unleashed on 27 September 2020 by Azerbaijan with the support of Turkey and involvement of terrorist mercenaries against Artsakh/Nagorno-Karabakh made more striking the consequences of not solving systemic problems recorded many times previously, discovered new problems requiring systemic approaches and solutions that will have a crucial importance for the restoration of the armed forces acting effectively for the defense of the state.
We are all aware of what happened during and after the 44-day war, although its causes are yet to be discovered through a complete and comprehensive investigation.
For years on end, we have recorded various problems as a result of our monitoring of the situation of servicemen’s rights protection, we have regularly made publications on them and presented recommendations to make changes.
The war discovered issues of both managing and organizing the armed forces, including matters related to the status of missing persons and their family members, matters related to the rights of servicemen and other participants of the war, dignity-related matters, shortcomings in communication with the public, lack of a crisis management strategy and so on.
Problems continue to be discovered also after the hostilities ended: the databases of missing persons, captives and those killed in this war are not properly coordinated, it is not even clear whether such databases exist or not. In any case, the data we have received do not make it possible to form such an idea.
Each crisis, with all its devastating consequences, also formulates a need to reevaluate, reposition, correct oneself, find solutions to the problems discovered and recorded, and respond properly.
The work aimed at the restoration of both organizational and moral-psychological situations is essential for the restoration of the RA Armed Forces as a state institute.
Now, just as always, the points listed below are of priority importance: protection of servicemen’s rights; ensuring conditions for their dignified service; psychological support, especially, in the post-war period; restoration of the normal work of separate structures of the Armed Forces; coordination of information provision and exchange; proper provision of society with information. The return of POWs and captives, as well as receiving information on missing persons and providing it to their relatives are pressing issues.
Key for the Armed Forces, the following issues remain on the agenda: eliminating corruption, making efforts to have a professional army, establishing a decent remuneration for servicemen according to their professional knowledge.
The Armed Forces are one of the key structures of a democratic state and they continue to remain so, especially in terms of responding to and preventing the new security challenges that have arisen as a result of the war.
In this harsh period, we wish a safe, peaceful and dignified service to the frontline servicemen ensuring the security of the state and its citizens; we wish prisoners of war the soonest return to their families; we wish the injured servicemen a recovery; we wish dignified living conditions for the servicemen who acquired disabilities; we wish strong will and strength to the families of killed and missing servicemen; and the restoration of the role of the Armed Forces as the guarantor of security.