Armenia Mourns Victims of Warehouse Explosion

Fireworks explosion in a Yerevan market leaves many Nitros devastated


Anahit Sargsyan, Staff Writer

It started off as a nice summer day for the people of Armenia. It was a little windy, but people wanted to enjoy their summer afternoon. Like always, the Surmalu Mall, located in Yerevan, was busy. People went with their families and friends to have fun or go to work, not knowing the tragedy that awaited them. 

On August 14, 2022, there was an explosion at the Surmalu mall that left many people speechless and at a loss. The mall included a warehouse full of fireworks that set off for no known reason. Armenian authorities have ruled out terrorism, but they are still trying to understand what happened. 

The explosion started from a huge amount of smoke that signaled people to leave the mall, and though some escaped, many have died and many more were injured. Firefighters tried to extinguish the smoke, but because of the winds and the fireworks that were still in the warehouse, a huge explosion destroyed the building and those around it. The people of Armenia came together to help the firefighters and remove the remains. 

Sadly, not everyone escaped in time. There were over 60 people injured and rushed to the hospital for immediate care. At the moment, there are 16 people who have passed away and more than a dozen people remain missing. There is a search still going on to find those missing people, but there is little to no hope for them. Two of the deceased are a pregnant woman with her child, and they were last seen hugging each other before dying.

A majority of Glendale High School students are aware of this incident and are just as heartbroken as you would expect.

“Once I heard the news in the morning my heart sank,” said Lyudmila Martirosyan, a junior at GHS. “I was in shock and didn’t know how to react to all of this. I hope all of the passed rest in peace and I know Armenia will get through this. We are strong people.” Lyudmila feels the pain of many others but has hope for the better. 

“The moment I heard what happened I was frozen,” recalled sophomore Naira Hovasapyan. “It was hard to even watch the videos. My heart aches for the people of Armenia, but I know we will recover and move forward. May God rest their souls.” Naira wishes prayers for the losses but knows that Armenia will survive this incident. 

Another sophomore, Maria Contess Caranto, who isn’t Armenian, knew what happened but did not know how serious it was. “I had heard about the explosion from Instagram, and also a classmate was talking about it during class with her friends, but not a lot,” she said.

Maria was not aware of the devastation that the explosion has caused. “I had no idea there were that many injuries,” she said. “I know Armenia has been suffering for a long time, especially with the recent war that happened, but this is also very difficult. Rest in peace to the fallen and prayers to the missing people.” 

All GHS students hope and pray for everyone involved in the incident and wish them all rest. As many people have said, Armenia might be small, but it is strong, and the Armenian people truly have hearts made of steel. 

May God protect our country and our people.