Mr. Terrell to Mr. Olney.

No. 1017.]

Sir: I have the honor to append on the overleaf for your information the copy of an Imperial iradé which prohibits from hereafter residing in Turkey any Armenian who has emigrated in the last twenty years. Two months only are allowed to those Armenian subjects who are temporarily absent to return. Those who return with foreign passports will not be recognized as foreign subjects and will not be permitted to remain. Those who desire to leave must bind themselves with a responsible surety that they will not return.

The requirement of security is likely to interpose a new difficulty in getting the wives of our naturalized Armenians away, even if consent to leave is given, for their poverty-stricken friends can not furnish the security.

I have, etc.,

A. W. Terrell.
[Inclosure 1017.—From Levant Herald, October 9, 2896.]

Imperial Iradé.

the emigration of armenians.

The following official communication appeared this morning in all the Turkish papers published in the capital:

In consequence of recent events in Constantinople, certain members of the Armenian community, fathers of families or bachelors, artisans, merchants, or others, continue to emigrate. Then individuals of no certain occupation find their way somehow into the various vilayets of the Empire.

Now, the Armenian agitators attribute this emigration to an alleged want of confidence and nonexisting security in the capital. They invent and publish in this connection all sorts of lies and incorrect statements.

Since the foundation of the Ottoman Empire, need it be said, the Imperial Government has never ceased pursuing a just line of conduct, the object being to safeguard the lives, property, and honor of its loyal subjects. The Imperial Government is in a position, under the protecting scepter of His Imperial Majesty the Sultan, to prevent all cause of anxiety or fear, which might induce further emigration. Thus, all who desire to leave the country must sign a document and also have a solvable guaranty, confirmed by the patriarchate, that they will not return to Turkey. This declaration must be accompanied by the likeness of the emigrant, and it will only be after fulfilling such formalities that emigration will be authorized. The passports delivered to these emigrants will state that such persons will not be [Page 938] allowed to set foot again on Ottoman territory. The explanation in question, as well as a declaration that the emigrants have lost Ottoman nationality, will he duly inscribed in the registers of the commission ad hoc, in the archives of the competent department, as well as at the chancellery of the Armenian patriarchate. A delay of a month and a half, and in cases of plausible hindrance, two months’ delay, commencing from to-day, will be granted to those who have gone abroad without authorization from the Imperial Government, to return to their homes. In the event of their design to stay where they are, they must make a declaration to this effect in the Turkish embassies or legations abroad. Emigrants of this category will, nevertheless, lose their nationality as Ottoman subjects, unless they return to Turkey within the above-named period.

Ottoman Armenian subjects who have emigrated under false names and yet by diverse means have returned to Turkey with foreign passports will not be recognized as foreign subjects, nor will they be allowed to live in any part of the Empire.

Armenians who have emigrated during the past twenty years, and especially members of the committee of agitators, will not benefit from the present arrangement. Consequently they will not be permitted to return here. Every agitator who returns to Turkey will be arrested and brought before the ordinary tribunals.

As regards Armenians of foreign nationality, who in great numbers are among the agitators as organizers of disturbance, the Government and the police rind it difficult to distinguish between the one and the other. In consequence such foreign Armenians will not be allowed to assume Ottoman nationality, in accordance with the law which authorizes the admission of other foreigners to become Ottoman subjects.

These regulations, decided upon at a council of ministers, have been sanctioned by Imperial iradé.