His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, has issued a message on the Day of Victory and Liberation of Shushi:
From the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, we extend our Pontifical blessings and congratulations to our faithful people, on the occasion of the day of the glorious victory of May 9, the Liberation of Shushi and the foundation day of the Defense Army of Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh).
This triple wonder and celebrations of May, again fill our souls with joy. Today, we reflect on and reevaluate the significant efforts that our people have made, which contributed to the victory in the Great Patriotic War and the establishment of peace in the world. This victorious day during the Artsakh Liberation struggle, our heroic sons, with unbending will and a brave spirit, liberated Shushi, which was of important strategic significance, and the center of our national culture. During those decisive days, the Defense Army was established which is the guarantee of peace and security of Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabagh).
Today, despite the peace-loving spirit of our people, the defense of the frontline continues to be urgent. Facing these war challenges, we are pledged to national unity, the prospering of the homeland is an necessity for us, as well as the strengthening of the Armenian Army, which is the guarantee of our security.
We pray that Almighty God grants comfort to the souls of our hero sons who died for the homeland, grants peace to the world, and strengthens and keeps our people and our native statehood secure, now and forever. Amen.