The Scene of Horror in Trebizond
Italian Consel's Statement
Details with regard to the persecution of the Armenians in Turkey were recently given in the ...“Messagaro” by Signor Corrini, till recently the Italian Consul at Trebizond.
From the 24th of June the Armenians in Trebizond were interned: they were then sent escorted by gendarmes to distant regions to distant regions, but the fate of at least four-fifths was death. The order of internment came from the Central Government and from the Committee of Union and Congress. The local authorities and even the Mahometan population tried to resist and to decrease the numbers of the victims by hiding them, but in vain. The orders from Constantinople were categorical, and all had to obey.
The Italian Consul tried in intervene and save at least the women and children. He obtained several exceptions which however on the orders of the Committee were not respected. It was a veritable massacre of innocents, a flagrant violation of the rights of humanity. The Armenian Catholics, who are usually respected except during massacres, were this time treated worse than the others.
Executions in Mass
Of the fourteen thousand Armenians who inhabited Trezbizond and who never gave provocation in any way, there remained only an odd hundred by the time the Consul departed on July 24. Signor Corrini declares that for a whole month he witnessed terrible scenes, executions on mass. Under his window passed columns of Armenians imploring help, which it was impossible to give them on account of the 15,000 soldiers, besides gendarmes and a number of volunteers from the Committee of Union and Progress. The scenes of desolation, tears, curses, suicides, sudden insanity, fire, shooting in the streets, in the houses, and in the country are impossible to describe. Hundreds of corpses were found every day in the streets. Violated women, children carried off from their families and placed in boats, clad in nothing more than a shirt, then drowned in the Black Sea or the rivers — these are some of the episodes.
The Consul adds:— When one has witnessed for a month daily scenes of this terrible character, without being in a position to do anything, one wonders, Have not all the cannibals and wild beast of the world sought refuge in Constantinople. Such massacres cry out for the vengeance of all Christendom. If people knew what I know, had seen what I had seen, and heard what I have heard, all the Christian Powers still neutral would rise against Turkey and cry anathema against the barbarous government and the savage Committee, as well as hold responsible the Austrians and Germans who tolerate and even aid crimes which are unparalleled in ancient or modern history. It is an unspeakable shame and horror.