Mehmed Talat Paşha to the Presidency of the Martial Law Court on May 24, 1915

Mehmed Talat to the Presidency of the Martial Law Court
by Mehmed Talat Paşha

Ottoman Government

Original copy of Mehmed Talat to the Presidency of the Martial Law Court

Ministry of Internal Affairs

General Directorate of National Police Organization


To the Presidency of the Martial Law Court

Top Secret

Rejoinder to your message dated May 18, 1915, and numbered 831. The Armenian Hinjack Committee is a rebellious committee established in “1878.” As far as its program is considered it is a social democrat committee. Their main aim after the declaration of the constitutional monarchy has become the founding of an autonomous administration under the control of Europe and to declare independence in due time under the pretext that the government has not introduced new changes and that it was trying to Turkefy the other nations. Recently, under the encouragings of the committee leaders and especially of Akno’s enticements, the committee leaders have agreed to act in unison in every attempt that would serve against the government and the state. Thus, all the events that broke out ever since, in the eastern provinces or those that broke out in the other regions of the Ottoman State, were all set up by the contrivances of these committees, upon the instructions of the branches, and with the help of the gang leaders.

Considering the events in the eastern provinces: the Armenians under the control of the committee leaders have indulged in many rebellious activities in and around Bitlis, Hizan, and Muş. On the other hand, although lots of major rebellious attempts were made in Zeytûn, which was one of the important centers of the rebellion for the committee, only a few were subdued by the armed forces. On the other hand, the rebellions that broke out in the environs of Çatak and Gevaş near Van, which has been continuing for the last two months, has rapidly spread into Van and the local rebels together with the rebels under the leadership of Hinjack and Daschnak committee leaders coming from Russia have destroyed the offices of Reji (Tekel - tobacco administration), Ottoman Public Debts Administration, banks, and of the post office; furthermore they have martyred hundreds of soldiers, militiamen, and civilians with bombs and dynamites. During the investigations carried out in other cities like Kayseri, Diyarbakır, Elazığ, Samsun, Ankara, Sivas, Aleppo, Adana, Maraş, and Izmir lots of explosives and restricted guns have been discovered especially in the places belonging to the Armenians who were the members of the Hinjackist committee.

Attached are the two photographs taken in Kayseri and Diyarbakır. The Ottoman Armenians coming from America, Bulgaria, and from Romania together with the members of the Hinjack and Tashnaksutyun committees have joined the Russian forces voluntarily, and under the leadership of MP Pastirmacijan from Erzurum, and Antranik and his friends who were notoriously renowned for their atrocities and brutalities in and around Edirne during the Balkan Wars have massacred the all the Muslims and demolished all the villages they have come across around Bayazit and along the border.

In fact, the Armenian committees, centered in Russia and in other states that still maintained their “revolutionary” titles, especially the Hinjack committee, have never refrained from continuing their activities that were to mar the country’s life and future through their publications. They have unanimously decided to rebel with all their might at the most appropriate time when the army would be in its weakest state during the war. The measures they have taken in the eastern provinces and around Sivas to threaten the Ottoman Army in the back, the arming of the deserter Armenians, and their use against the state and transforming of many places into store houses for weapons and explosives are the definite proofs of the mentioned decision.

Consequently, this document proves that all the rebellious activities have been incited and controlled by the Hinjack and Daschnak committees and by the branches that are subordinated to them, who all have been pursuing the aim of freedom; it furthermore proves that the individuals residing in the our state or in foreign countries are pursuing the realization of the same aim, the founding of an independent Armenian State, by destroying the Ottoman Sovereignty and annihilating the Muslim population.

May 24, 1915

Minister of Internal Affairs