Hovhannes Kajaznuni, one of the founders of the Armenian Republic, died on this day in 1938, on January 15, in the Soviet prison, because of pneumonia. Today, a number of citizens burned candles at the tomb of Kajaznuni, in memory of the first prime minister of Armenia and the chairman of parliament.
“If Aram Manukyan became the founder of the First Republic, then Hovhannes Kajaznuni was the spirit of the Republic and his honesty became a symbol for our country. And the next generations of the state have much to learn from him,” said Albert Achemyan, a member of Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF).
The exact location of Kajaznuni’s grave is unclear.
“Probably he was buried at the Cozern Cemetery, where the Armenian National Assembly’s building is now built; his body is left under that building,” says journalist Tatul Hakobyan and adds, “Albert Hovhannes Kajaznuni died at the age of twenty. He was the son of a man who were going to become the prime minister of our country after a few days. This man sent his son to war, a phenomena, which is incomprehensible for nowadays. I do not want to underestimate anyone, but imagine that today a war is going to be started; where our prime minister’s sons will be?”
The Armenian National Council elected Kajanuni as the first prime minister of the independent Armenian state on June 6, 1918. He was in diplomatic missions in Europe (beginning in August 1919) and the United States (from October 9, 1919 until August 1920). He returned to Armenia to become chairman of the parliament on November 4, 1920. Kajaznuni prepared a critical report for the Armenian Revolutionary Federation party convention held in Bucharest during April 1923 , titled Dashnaktsutyun Has Nothing More to Do, which called for the party’s support of Soviet Armenia.
Kajaznuni was arrested after the Bolsheviks came to power in December 1920 but was liberated during the February 1921 revolt against the Soviet regime.
There were no officials among those who pay tribute to Hovhannes Kajaznuni. On February 14, Kajaznuni’s 150th anniversary will be marked. Today, those who remember him, hope at least to see the authorities on that day.