On May 31, leaked photos appeared on the internet depicting the corpses of Armenian Soldiers, killed during the 44-Day Artsakh War being stored in morgues.
The photos showed the improper storage of the bodies and remains of the killed servicemen in the Abovyan branch of the Forensic-Medical Center over 6 months after the end of the 44-day Artsakh War.
This was followed by the parents and relatives of missing soldiers blocking the Heratsi street in Yerevan in protest after learning that hundreds of corpses could potentially be stored in morgues.
The Ministry Health stated that the center worked 24/7, was in constant contact with parents and relatives. Today, in order to find out additional information and answer the questions, the management of the SNCO met with the parents, received everyone and answered their questions. In order to refute the circulated misinformation, according to the preliminary agreement, the management of the SNCO provided the relatives of the victims with the available accurate facts. But without waiting for that, they resorted to the option of closing the street.
The MoH also said the corpses at the Forensic-Medical Center in the Abovyan branch were temporarily stored in the basement with heat-insulating walls, the relatives expressed a desire to move the bodies to another place. Despite the fact that the movement of the corpses is not expedient, the current conditions of their storage meet the professional requirements, nevertheless, we decided to meet the wishes of the parents and move them to the refrigeration section of another forensic center, avoiding additional shocks to relatives. The MoH mentioned once again that the corpses have been properly identified and are waiting for relatives to take them for burial.
The MoH followed up with a following statement in which it once again stated that there can be no question of new or ‘hidden’ corpses after media reports questioned the exact number of bodies kept in the morgue.
It should be reminded that both in the past and today, the relatives of the victims were in all morgues, and no problems with keeping corpses were reported. It should be noted that the forensic medical center did its best to carry out the identification work as soon as possible, as it has always been in contact with the parents and relatives of the victims. Taking into account the special case registered today in the branch of the Forensic-Medical Center in the Abovyan, the department will carry out an official investigation to study the issue related to ensuring the proper conditions for keeping the bodies and corpses,” said the MoH.