Mr. Gresham to Mr. Riddle.
Washington , April 18, 1894 .
Sir: I transmit herewith a copy of a dispatch (No. 8 of the 26th ultimo) from the consul at Beirut in regard to the prolonged detention and final expulsion from Turkish territory of the American citizens, Mr. Arakjinjian and Mrs. Toprahanian, by the authorities at Alexandretta.
Although Mr. Gibson reports having brought the circumstances to the attention of the legation through the consulate-general, his present dispatch so clearly narrates the course of the incident as to make it suitable for preservation on your files.[Page 773]
With reference to the Department’s instruction No. 167, of 30th ultimo, on the same subject, I desire to lay special stress on the extraordinary harshness of the action of the caimacam of Alexandretta, who, in the face of the orders from Constantinople to permit these unfortunate persons to depart in accordance with their long obstructed plans and at the urgent solicitation of the United States minister, appears to have arbitrarily and with gratuitous cruelty commanded their expulsion within one hour’s time. This circumstance abundantly justifies the comments on the whole proceeding contained in the Department’s note to Mavroyeni Bey of March 27, and warrants the President’s expectation that the Porte will hasten to disavow the act of its local agents and tender to the injured parties redress for the needless wrong they have suffered.
I am, etc.,