The last Armenians leaving Stepanakert. VIDEO

Artsakh journalist Marat Yeganyan published a video on his Facebook page and wrote:
“These are the last Armenians leaving the city.

Stepanakert, Republic of Artsakh”.

According to medieval Armenian sources, the settlement was originally an Armenian village named Vararakn. From the 10th–16th centuries, the settlement was a part of the Armenian Principality of Khachen.

Over the centuries, it would successively pass into the hands of the meliks of Karabakh and the Karabakh khans before coming under the control of the Russian Empire in 1822.

In the Russian Empire, the town was a part of the Shusha uezd of the Elizavetpol Governorate. According to the 19th-century author Raffi, in 1826, the local Armenian meliks met with the Persian crown prince Abbas Mirza, who had invaded Karabakh with his army, in the village to reconcile with the Persians and ensure the safety of the Karabakh Armenian population.


In 1847, Vararakn was a village of about 132 houses, consisting of 80 Armenian households, 52 Russian households, an Armenian church, and a cemetery. That same year, the village was renamed from Vararakn to Khankendi. By 1886, there were 52 houses in the settlement.


The population of Khankendi consisted of retired soldiers and their descendants, who belonged to the Russian Orthodox Church. The population was engaged in agriculture, as well as various crafts, carriage, the renting of apartments (mainly to military personnel), and so on.

After 1898, the tsarist government turned Khankendi into a Russian military garrison. The garrison consisted of barracks, hospitals, and a church, as well as, several houses where officers’ families and a small local population, who supplied the military units with food, lived. The local population consisted of Armenians and Azerbaijanis.


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