Turkish Government Said to Have Exterminated Four Fifths of Nation
Paris, July 15-The Journal continues its inquiry into the Armenian massacres and its special correspondent at Erzerum writes:
‘The mere mention of the figures at times exceeds in tragic eloquence the most pathetic recitals. At the beginning of the year 1915 there were in Turkey 2,500,000 Armenians. Today there remain but 500,000.
‘Two million human beings, four fifths of a nation exterminated-such is the work of the young Turk government, a government when it came into power was acclaimed by the whole civilized Europe, as a humanitarian and a progressive one.
‘The Central Armenia bureau at Tiflis ascertains that the number of Armenians who have escaped massacre and been deported to Mespotamima is only in round figures 100,000 and this number is daily on the wane as they die in large numbers owing to disease, privation and bad treatment.
‘It is believed that 100,000 Armenians are still in Cicilia and there are about 150,000 others in the western countries of Asia Minor. The number of those still at Constantinople and Smyrna is estimated at 180,000.
‘These figures give a total of 530,000 survivors, which is no doubt the maximum. Though this number should be added 200,000 refugees who succeeded in crossing the Russian frontier and are in the Caucasus.
‘All the other Armenians perished.
‘The whole of the responsibility for the massacres rests with the young Turk government and it is these young Turks who, under the eye of their accomplices, the German authorities in Constantinople, conceived and ordered the massacre and it is they who urged the savage Kurds to carry out the murders and also, wherever possible, the Mussulmana, by means of arousing their fanaticism.
‘Moreover, all Christians have been either persecuted or massacred. The superior of the French Dominican mission, Rev. Father Bernard, who lived in Van until the arrival of the Russian troops, has furnished the correspondent of the Journal with a list of the victims.
‘The Armenian Catholic bishop of Mardine, Monsiegneur Maloyan, was massacred with a number of his parishioners. Mgr. Isralian, bishop of Kharpou, was massacred on the way to exile between Orfa and Diarbekr, as well as a number of his priests and some sisters and a number of parishioners.
‘Mgr. Khardjadourian of Malatiou was strangled. The Chaldean bishop and Bishop Surien of Djexireah, together with a certain number of their priests and sisters were assassinated. It is believed that Mgr. Tohelebian of Diabakr met with the same fate. All the Chaldean and Syrian priests at Seert had their throats cut.
‘It is quite certain that all the Tertiary sisters of the Presentation were killed and this fate also overtook the priests of Medeah, Suevakde Dereke and at Vevan Chahir.
‘The young Turk government, of course, did not respect religious edifices after the expulsion of the French missionaries. Their establishments were pillaged and then either demolished or converted into Mussulman schools.’”