Allies To Punish Turks Who Murder-nyt19150524

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May 24, 1915

Notify Porte That Government Heads Must Answer to Armenian Massacres.

London -- A joint official statement by Great Britain, France, and Russia issued tonight says:

"For the past month Kurds and the Turkish population of Armenia have been engaged in massacring Armenians with connivance and help of the Ottoman authorities. Such massacres took place about the middle of April at Erzerum, Dertshan, Moush, Zeitun, and in all Cilicia."

"The inhabitants of about a hundred villages near Van were all assassinated. In the town itself the Armenian quarter is besieged by Kurds. At the same time the Ottoman Government at Constantinople is raging against the inoffensive Armenian population."

"In the face of these fresh crimes committed by Turkey, the allied Governments announce publicly to the Sublime Porte that they will hold all members of the Government as well as such of their agents as are implicated, personally responsible for such massacres."

By the middle of February reports of the slaughter of Armenians began to come to America, and the days of 1895-6 when to be an Armenian Christian was to be in constant danger were recalled.

On April 24, according to report, all of the inhabitants of ten villages near Van in Armenia, were massacred. Soon after this, on April 27, the State Department at Washington received a request from the head of the Armenian Church for intercession and relief.

This was the first official notice conveyed to this Government of prevailing conditions, and Secretary Brian at once cabled Ambassador Morgenthau in Constantinople to make a personal investigation of the extent of the massacres and to appeal in the name of this Government to the Turkish Government to exert its power and influence to stop the slaughter.

The massacres did not stop with the appeal from the Government, according to reports that continued to reach America. Less than three weeks ago news was received that the Armenians had barricaded the town of Van against the Kurds and Turks and had held it for a week. Simultaneously came the report that the Young Turks had adopted the policy of Abdul Hamid in 1905 -- the annihilation of the Armenians.

No one has attempted to estimate the number of those who have been massacred nor the amount of the property destroyed. The extent of the destruction and slaughter may be only imagined from the fact that scarcely a report coming from the affected regions that does not tell of troubles resulting usually in the deaths of hundreds of Armenians.

Thanks to [ASA] for digitizing this article.

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