STEPANAKERT, Nagorno-Karabakh—Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh) Republic president Bako Sahakian visited the Talish village of Martakert on December 31, to take part in celebratory events with the village residents ahead of the New Year, according to the Artsakh presidential press service.
Talish residents were forcefully displaced during the April War instigated by Azerbaijan in 2016, most of who migrated to the neighboring Alashan settlement in Martakert for safety. Reconstruction projects are currently taking place in Talish, while resettlement will come after winter.
Sahakian congratulated the attendees on the New Year and offered his best wishes.
A New Year congratulatory address for the people of Artsakh was also issued on Saturday on behalf of the President. The address can be read below.
A few hours later we will say goodbye to 2016, the year during which we continued to build and develop our Motherland, registered successes and achievements, overcame trials and difficulties.
The events of the tense April days, the pain of loss and grief, the feat of our hero sons and brothers are still fresh in our memory. In the crucial hour, the Armenian people demonstrated an unprecedented unity consolidating in a very short period of time and defending their honor and dignity. A soldier standing on the border of the native country showed once again the power of his spirit and arm rebuffing the unbridled adversary.
New heroes were born during the defense of the Fatherland whose names have been carved with golden letters in the history of our people. Their devotion and patriotism will always be a source of motivation and inspiration for the present and future generations. Eternal honor and glory to all our martyrs! Let only joy and prosperity further on prevail in their families, let their children rise under peaceful sky and in free, independent and developed Motherland dreamed of by their fathers.
The New Year is the holiday of new hopes and expectations for all of us. We believe that with every coming year our life will change, become better and more prosperous, our hearths will be full of warmth and kindness, our Motherland will keep strengthening and developing.
The year of 2017 will be eventful for our people and state. We will mark the 25th anniversaries of our army’s formation and the liberations of Shoushi, victories that have become a turning point in Artsakh’s life and possess a great meaning.
These victories and all our achievements gained during the years of independence became possible due to the joint efforts of our brothers and sisters from Mother Armenia and the Diaspora. We have been together and consolidated both in victories and ordeals. It has been so and so it will remain forever. This is the basis of our success.
Dear Artsakh people,
On this warm and festive day I want to first of all congratulate the entire personnel of the Defense Army, those brave men who will celebrate the New Year in the trenches guarding alertly and vigilantly the peace of our people. May our soldiers fulfill their service with honor and return home healthy and unscathed!
I congratulate all our compatriots, the entire Armenian people and wish peace, robust health and welfare. Let 2017 be a year of implementation of the inmost dreams and goals for every family in Artsakh.
Happy New Year and Merry Christmas!
December 31, 2016.”