A few weeks ago someone decided to get a sledgehammer and begin destroying a monument outside St. Mary's Armenian Church. This "monument" is known in Armenian as a "Khachkar," or stone cross.
The Khachkar has special meaning in the Armenian culture dating back thousands of years during which Armenians shed a lot of blood defending their right to practice Christianity. All over present-day Armenia and historical western Armenia (today's Turkey and Azerbaijan), one can find thousands of these centuries-old Khachkars that have tremendous historical significance. The carvings on each Khachkar are unique and tell their own story, sometimes to memorialize a death, to celebrate a new church or to honor someone living.
Over the years, as part of Turkey's campaign of denying the Armenian Genocide, the government has encouraged and organized the destruction of this archeological evidence of Armenians. They have also systematically destroyed Armenian churches that are centuries old with the military using them for target practice.