On April 30, 1991, in order to stop the deportation of Armenians from the village of Getashen, Tatul Krpeyan took Colonel Mashkov hostage. Mashkov was the commander of the Baku regiment of the Internal Troops of the USSR Ministry of Internal Affairs and an initiator of the deportation of Armenians from the village.
Tatul Krpeyan managed to take away from Mashkov a memo for officers with the encrypted names of all the armed units participating in the operation. The operation had been carefully prepared and codenamed “Ring”.
According to this encrypted message, the units of the 5478 military base (callsign of the commander “Virage”), 5477 military base (callsign of the commander “Obryv”), OMON of Azerbaijan (callsign “Dozor”), and many other units took part in the operation (according to “Epoch”, May 9, 1991).
In 1991, the government of the Azerbaijani SSR and the USSR commenced the Operation Ring aimed at deporting about three and a half thousand Armenians from the villages of Getashen and Martunashen. The Armenians refused to leave their native villages. Tatul attempted to start negotiations in order to save the lives of Getashen’s inhabitants.
S. Talalyan wrote in his memoirs: “They warned us all the time: ‘Even one shot will cost you dearly’. At the same time, the punitive squads were allowed to capture Getashen by any means necessary.
Realizing this, Tatul Krpeyan took the only right step: he jumped onto Mashkov’s tank with a grenade in his hand and shouted: ‘We have your soldiers, we will kill everyone if you do not leave. Why did you come here?’ The colonel was forced to order his troops to stop.”
G. Gurdjian wrote in his memoirs: “Together with Hrach, Tatul decided to move forward, holding Mashkov at gunpoint to ensure that the tanks would leave the village. Despite the order not to follow them, Krpeyan’s deputy Arthur Karapetyan accompanied the commander just in case to protect him. In the meantime, Mashkov was ordering his soldiers not to shoot and not to move forward.
Along the way, Krpeyan’s group ran into tanks and riot police. And here, Mashkov managed to escape from Krpeyan, leaving him defenseless. The Armenian was shot at once. Trying to save Tatul, Нrach and Arthur were also killed… So died Tatul Krpeyan, a man of an unusually large heart and courage.”
Now, in the park named after Tatul Krpeyan in Yerevan stands the bust of the hero.
Օղակ գործողություն 1991 թ. ապրիլ-օգոստոս