Yukhari Godakli

Yukhari Godakli is a village in the Zangezur uezd of the former Yelizavetpol (Ganja) governorate, later in the former Gafan district, and currently in the Syunik province. The provincial centre is located 11 km to the northeast of the town of Gapan and at a height of 1,025 m above sea level. After the establishment of the Zangezur uezd in Soviet Armenia on 31 August 1921, the settlement was integrated into the administrative area of Armenia. The village was marked on the five-verst map of the Caucasus.

The village was inhabited by 201 Azerbaijanis in 1897 and 79 in 1914. In 1918 the Azerbaijanis were massacred by Armenian armed units and deported. After the establishment of Soviet power in the territory of present-day Armenia, the Azerbaijanis were able to return to their homes. The village was inhabited by 132 Azerbaijanis in 1922, 118 in 1926, 163 in 1931, 221 in 1939, 180 in 1959, 275 in 1970and 381 Azerbaijanis in 1979. In 1988 the Azerbaijanis were completely deported by the Armenian state. At present, the village is inhabited only by Armenians.

The toponym was coined from the ethnonym “Godakli” which is related to the Turkic Gazakhlar tribe. “Yukhari” denotes a distinctive feature.

By decision of the Armenian Parliament dated 4 July 2006, the village was renamed “Vardavank”. According to the law “On the Administrative-Territorial Division of Armenia” dated 7 November 1995, it was integrated into the administrative area of the Syunik province.

Geographic coordinates: latitude 39°14’ N., longitude 46°30’ E.