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Military Authorities Report Another Non-Combat Death


Armenia - An Armenian soldier on combat duty on the border with Azerbaijan (file photo)

A second soldier within a space of one day has been reported dead in the Armenian military in conditions that local authorities say were not related to immediate combat duties.

In a Facebook post on Wednesday morning Armenian Defense Ministry spokesman Artsrun Hovannisian said that 19-year-old combat medic Hamlet Avagian serving in Armenia’s armed forces died at the northeastern section of the Armenian border with Azerbaijan on March 12.

“The death was not caused by an enemy shot,” said Hovannisian. “We offer our condolences to Hamlet Avagian’s family and friends.”

Later, the Armenian Defense Ministry issued a statement, saying that Avagian slipped and fell into a gorge while going from one military outpost to another for the purpose of administering medical aid. It said the conscript died from the injuries he sustained during the fall.

“Investigation is underway to establish the circumstances of the case,” the Defense Ministry’s press office said.

On Tuesday, a soldier was arrested in Nagorno-Karabakh on suspicion of killing a fellow conscript in the ethnic Armenian defense army reported earlier that day.

The Armenia-based Investigative Committee did not immediately disclose the identity of the arrested soldier.

Earlier, military authorities in Nagorno-Karabakh reported that in the early hours of March 12, 19-year-old conscript Karen Karapetian sustained a fatal gunshot wound at an outpost in the northeastern direction of the ‘line of contact’ with Azerbaijan.

Still at the early stage of the probe investigators ruled out that the Armenian soldier might have been killed with a bullet released from Azerbaijani military positions.

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