Massacres of Diarbekir

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I. a witness: Hanna Wire of Chamoun, chaldéen of Diarbékir

Chaldéen, Hanna, made of Diyarbekir to Constantinople at the beginning of the winter 1918, had lost his/her brother and his parents, victims of Turkish cruelty. It attended the massacres of Diarbékir and here the narration which it made in M.Latif Bey Tabib, notable chaldéen of Constantinople.

hanna Wire of Chamoun, chaldéen of DiarbékirIt is Hamid Bey who controlled initially the vilayet of Diarbékir.

Inter alia important misdeeds, Hamid Bey made shoot the village poor chaldéens village of Carabache, located close to Diarbékir, under the fallacious pretext, which they were flee without licence of the vilayet of Erzeroum. However, this was absolutely false, these unhappy not having left their residences since the decree of enrôlement.

The shooting was so barbarian and if nourished that the bodies of the villagers were jagged. For roof of atrocity, one obliged Christian <p.153> to charge the victims on tipcarts and to transport them to the cemetery. The vali Hamid Bey and the civil inspector Nadji Bey, attended with joy this execution.

Meanwhile Hamid Bey having received an order of Constantinople, had precipitately to leave her station in March 1915. This running away gave place to legitimate fears in the Christian population, which pushed the archbishop to ask for the government the cause of this departure. For any answer, the governor says to him: “Will know it later to You.”

It was Doctor Réchid Bey which succeeded Hamid. The new one come settled with the governorship having for cops guards forty “Tchétas”, true gangsters, all circassiens like him.

First aid of Réchid Bey was to organize a so-called militia made up of notable natives and here some names:

Réchid, the governor.

Yassin Aga Zadé Chewki, ordering of the militia.

Djémil Paha Zadé Moustafa Bey, lieutenant-colonel of the militia.

Hadji Baki effendi, captain of the militia.

The son of Ali Haïto Said, second lieutenant of the militia.

The furrier Moussoulli Zadé Mehmed. <p.154>

Direkdji Tahir Effendi, captain of the militia.

Attar Zadé Hakki Effendi, president of the Committee Union and Progress.

Djerdjis Zadé Youssouf, the one-eyed one.

Djerdjis Zadé Abdul Rahin Effendi.

Tahir Aga Zadé Azize.

The deputy Feïzi Bey, one of the most influential members of the Committee, provocative principal of the massacres.

The son of Véli Baba, Véli Bey which is in Constantinople.

The circassien Réchid, ordering the convoys of deportees.

Pirrindji Zadé Sidki the Effendi, cruelest of all and relative of the deputy Féïz Bey.

The police chief of police force, frightening Memdouh Bey, author of thousands of crimes.

The assistant of the vali Bedri Bey.

Kelle Rédjo.

Tcharkhi Zadé, police chief of police force.

Mehmed, the police chief.

Emin Aga, the tyrant of the village chaldéen of Tcharokhia.

Abdul Lative case, assistant police chief.

Yahia Effendi, the exterminor of the inhabitants of the same village chaldéen.

Kassab Hadji, Suleiman (to stop).

Séedli Bakal Hayo.

Mardilli Emin Effendi (police force).

Sarradj Youssouf Aga.

Hâfize, idiot wire (police force).

Hâfize, the police chief.

Zaza Alo Effendi.

Archbishop of DiarbékirVali issued, following a council held by the poor wretches higher mentioned, that all the weapons that the Christians held on their premises were to be delivered within three day, or else those would be liable to severe sorrows. Each one delivered all that it held in fact. One transported a great quantity of weapons and dynamite of the seraglio and barracks of the vilayet to make use of it against the Christians. The gangsters made the photographs of this setting in scene and reproduced them in booklets thus making propaganda in favour of their harmful projects.

To make them acknowledge that they had weapons hidden on their premises, one subjected the Christians to terrible torments. One tore off the nails to them and one shoed the heels to them as if they had been horses.

The second cruel act started with the raid of the Christian soldiers. One made publish an opinion notifying that the soldiers who knew a profession would be employed into cheap and simple workmen admitted with the <p.156> construction of the roads. The known as professionals thus left their residences and went to carry out work that one had indicated to them.

Fifteen hundred individuals were thus engaged and a month after pitilessly massacred. Not one did not escape death. The places of their martyrdom are called Kara Djoroun and Kara Bagh two away hours from Diarbékir. All the murderers were gendarmes of Diarbékir of which, inter alia, the smuggler Emin Gazal and Halil Tchaouch fruiter in Tahta-Kalé. These hecatombs took place in July of the year 1915.

I know the massacred names of several Chaldéens:

Kériakos Tadjer.

Boudros Nedjmé.

Boutros, wire of Amsih.

Stéfane, the blacksmith.

Hanna Boroudji, of Séert.

Hadji Viérim, wire of Joseph, clock and watch maker.

Chamoun, wire of Stéfane, principal chaldéenne of the vilayet.

Rice Kalla, fruit-loft, etc, etc

Those which had not been sent to the repair roads were stopped and on their premises directed, shackles with the hands, on the Tachnak coffee. Before leadbeing led to the slaughter-house like sheep, these unhappy was inspected by Vali. They were imprisoned with the <p.157> notable Christians of the country, that is to say 700 people approximately.

One of the most sanguinary individuals, the deputy of Dirabékir, Fevzi Bey, demanding costs which costs that the Christians were massacred, went, accompanied by the vali Réchid Bey, at the office of the telegraph, to ask by dispatch, with the central seat of the Union and Progrès, the extermination of these unhappy.

It managed to obtain the order of massacre pretexting that if the Christians were not punished, the Moslems frightened and barricaded in the mosques would not dare to go on their premises to be occupied with their business.

The presence on the Tiger of several kelleks (rafts) prepared in advance had given birth to from concern among the Christian population, but the Turks explained hypocritically that these kelleks was to be charged with corn for the vilayet of Mosul.

They were only lies there. The fatal hour arrived, alas! By one night dark, the 700 people higher mentioned were embarked and directed towards a named locality Pélikan… There, one hastened to unload them by them ensuring that they would be taken along healthy and save in Djéziré and from there in Mosul. While they were moving, a shooting ordered by the chief killed of it a great number and for <p.158> to exterminate the remainder one employed a trick. The commander made say that this shooting was due to an awkwardness. “Known nobody loses his coolness and which one restarts.” The survivors, believing in this easy way, rose and as soon as they took again their walk one second shooting exterminated all the convoy. Then the assassins fell like wild beasts on their victims and dévalisèrent them. The spoils were rich, because before the departure of the convoy one had made say to the Christians whom they were to provide with their money and their gold to be able to provide at the expenses of their long voyage.

In their cruel rapacity, they made telegraph with the parents of massacred so that those came to them pecuniarily to assistance. This trick still brought back some sums to the torturers.

This achieved hecatomb, the assassins turned over downtown for compéter the series of the crimes which they were going to perpetrate against the remainder of the Christian population.

One started by dividing the Armenian districts and chaldéens into zones, and each zone was left with the guard of torturers designated to this end.

The houses of each district were besieged and one made say to the women and to the old men, whom they were to hasten <p.159> to leave with the children, while not forgetting to add only those which would like to pay could take cars. Those which could not rent cars, i.e. the poor, would be charged with back with ass. The Kurds of the villages belonging to the president of the municipality of the city, Chukri Bey, were in charge of the constitution of these lugubrious caravans. They recommended to the poor victims to charge as much as it would be possible for them objects and ustensils of house, because on the way one would need some. What was made.

But their sad fate was quickly accomplished. Most of the convoys was massacred in the villages of Chukri and the remainder close to the bridge of the city. Naturally the objects remained between the hands of the assassins. These tragic scenes were repeated several times. Meanwhile an amnesty of the central head office of Constantinople was issued in favour of Assyro-Chaldéens. Alas! amnestied could about it profit only for one small part. The archbishop chaldéen, Mgr Suléïmah, indicator that the chaldéennes families were, in spite of the amnesty, off-set to be delivered to the torturers, with much courage, made amazing efforts to stop the ires of the latter. In spite of the danger which it ran it was addressed to Vali and to the deputy Zoulfi Effendi. This <p.160> last ensured to him hypocritically that no measurement was taken against its nation. Unfortunately the harmful work always continued. The known as deputy Zoulfi Effendi extorted me 200 pounds out of gold, to save my Joseph brother, who was nevertheless delivered to the torturers. These hecatombs continued for 4 months consecutive. The disaster Vali Réchid remained at its station during one year. The day of his departure one made collect 150 debtors of the State and so that its departure was bright one made them massacre in “Siran Tépé”, locality located at a few minutes of the barracks of Diarbékir.

Among them there was several Chaldéens of my knowledge, inter alia Hanna and Riz Kallah.

The stolen objects with the unhappy victims were piled up in vast houses of the Christians, inter alia in that of the Kazazian family in order to being distributed between the gangsters. A great number of pretty girls were sent in the harems.

The Archbishop, Mgr Seuleiman, wishing to benefit from the amnesty, gave at the last moment, to save the life of the survivors of his nation, a sum of 1.500 Ltqs, with the Réchid bloodthirsty man. All that it could obtain by the latter effort, it was that part of its community, instead of being massacred, was <p.161> sent in a place close to the Fisckia city, where one employed the men with the repair of the roads. Of course, the archbishop was to pay his pocket the ration of bread of the workmen whom one made work in drudgery.

The churches of the villages chaldéens all were ransacked, plundered and ruined. Those which were saved downtown were transformed into hospital or stables.

Known as the vali Réchid sent, says one, in Constantinople eighty bundles of objects removed with the Christians; the remainder was given by Réchid to friends, inter alia with the deputies Féizi and Zulfi.