The Argus, 19 februari 1923
Bron: National Library of Australia

Armenian Relief

Stories of Tragic Suffering

Dr. Leeper, president of the Armenian Relief Committee, has received by letter from America particulars of the relief measures being taken in Armenia. The message was sent from Constantinople by cable. It announces that Mr. George St. John Williams died after a brief illness and was buried in the American Cemetery at Marsovan. The Steamer St. Cecilia, with 3,200 orphans from Anatolia on board, bound for Greece, ran out of provisions off Gallipoli. The Near East Relief Committee at Constantinople despatched food by tugs.

The Kemalist decision to permit Christians to leave Anatolia had, it is stated, resulted in a rush from the interior to the Black Bea and Mediterranean coasts. There had been much suffering, and some deaths had occurred. It was reported hy wireless that 700 orphans had been "stranded" at Tokat and Marsovan, and that 500 refugees en route to Samsoun were in the greatest distress. The churches and barns between Sives and Samsoun "were filled with the sick and the dying." One of the officials of the Near East Relief Home at Caesarea for Greek and Armenian orphans says:-- "I have never in my whole experience witnessed such sorow, distress, and death as is now caused by this vast flight, which is depopulating one of the richest districts in Turkey. As we were marching through the gates of Cicilia, in Taurus, I saw a thin column of people coming towards us. They were 1,000 in line. This was composed of women and children and a few old men. Every face bore a deathlike pallor. A Turkish soldier told me that they were being deported from Smyrna to Caesarea, and that they were being punished for the excesses committed by the Greek soldiers against the Turkish people."... My last moments at Oulowkisla were spent in making representations to the authorities for protection against soldiers who were trying to carry off our oldest girls."