28 April 2005, 13:48

'Black books' expose genocide

Hurriyetim, one of Turkey's leading newspapers, published a sensational document referred to as Talat Pasha's "black books" on its front page on 25 April, Armenia's national radio says.

In his "black books," Talat Pasha handwrote how many Armenians had been banished from Anatolia on his orders in 1915. In its article titled Reality Disclosed in Black Books, Hurriyetim says Talat Pasha's wife and his granddaughter Bafral have preserved the "black books."

The number of Armenians deported from Anatolia was 924,158, according to Talat Pasha's books. Talat Pasha also indicated in his "black books" the number of Armenians banished from each province. Istanbul, better known as Constantinople that time, is not represented in this list though.

Talat Pasha was a member of the Young Turk government of Ottoman Turkey. As Grand Vizier and Interior Minister, he was one of the key ideologists and organisers of the 1915-1923 Armenian Genocide in Ottoman Turkey. In 1920 Talat Pasha was shot dead in Berlin by an Armenian student, Soghoman Tehlirian, who had lost his entire family during the genocide. A Berlin jury acquitted him.

In another release posted on 27 April 2005 on the internet though, Hurriyetim says comparable numbers of Turks were moved from eastern Turkey, according to the "black books." See this release here or here.

The 1948 UN Convention on Genocide defines genocide as "any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:

(a) Killing members of the group;

(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;

(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;

(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;

(e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group."

Author: Ashot Ter-Grigorian, CK correspondent;

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