HC Deb 04 April 1895 vol 32 cc931-2
MR. C. E. SCHWANN (Manchester, N.)

I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he will use the influence of Her Majesty's Government to ensure that the Vicar General of Moush, by name Nerses Khara-Khassian, who is now in Bitlis prison, should be summoned to Moush to give evidence before the Commission and Delegates, as he is intimately acquainted with the origin and object of the alleged massacre of Sassoon; and, will he cause representations to be made that Dr. Humbartson, known as Murad Effendi, also lying in Bitlis prison, it is said under sentence of death, should be brought before the Commission for examination?


It appears from a Report of the British Delegate that the President of the Commission has decided that Murad and some other prisoners at Bitlis are to be examined before the Commission. The name of Nerses is not specially mentioned amongst these, but the Delegates have full power to suggest the names of persons to be examined, and the Reports received from them show that this power is being satisfactorily used.

MR. JOHN AIRD (Paddington, N.)

I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if the provisions of Article 61 of the Berlin Treaty have been fulfilled as regards the obligation of the Sublime Porte to make known periodically to the Powers the steps taken to carry out the improvements and reforms demanded by local requirements in the provinces inhabited by the Armenians, and to guarantee their security against the Circassians and Kurds; and, whether the Powers, if periodically informed of the steps taken, have, as provided for in the Treaty, superintended their application.


The Turkish Government have on various occasions communicated to the Powers measures of reform which have been introduced in the provinces of Asia Minor. Unfortunately, those measures have not adequately fulfilled the objects in view. The British Consuls in the various provinces have, in the exercise of their duty, brought this fact to the knowledge of Her Majesty's Government, and it has formed the subject of representations on various occasions. The extent to which other Powers have acted in the same manner is not a point upon which Her Majesty's Government can make any definite statement.