Mr. Tyler to Mr. Hay.

No. 66.]

Sir: I have the honor to inclose for your information a copy and translation of a letter which I addressed to the minister for foreign affairs yesterday, the 28th instant, regarding the failure of the authorities in the province of Azerbaijan to arrest the accomplices of the murderer of Mr. Labaree. I use this more comprehensive term because Urumia is a subgovernment within this province, and its officers are at the disposal of the Crown Prince, whose jurisdiction extends over the whole, and who consequently is indirectly responsible [Page 671] for the obstruction, excuses, and delays which have so unjustifiably impeded the execution of justice in this case.

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I shall continue to press the matter for full satisfaction with all energy, perseverance, and urgency, but if other representations or demonstration are to be made, I shall await further instructions.

I have, etc.,

John Tyler.

Mr. Tyler to the Mushir-ed-Dowlah.

Your Excellency: At our interview on the 20th of June you asked me to telegraph to the Government of the United States that the Kurds, accomplices of Mir Ghaffar, the murderer of Mr. Labaree, had been demanded of His Imperial Highness the Valialed (crown prince) and that you were confident that they would be arrested and produced.

As I had heard nothing from your excellency on the subject, I wrote on the 13th instant, reminding you of what had passed, and at the same time forwarding for your information a translation of a letter which I had received frm the Department of State, in which I was urged to press the case upon your attention.

On the 20th instant Mirza Hussein Guli Khan Navale called to talk over the matter and ask for the names of the accused. I begged of him to tell your excellency that the situation was grave indeed, and that the Government of the United States would not give up their demands until justice was meted out to these criminals.

On the 23d instant I sent to your excellency a list of the fourteen men charged with this crime and their places of abode, so that it should not be said that the governor of Urumia lacks the necessary information to enable him to act effectively.

It is usual in crimes of this kind, and of much less barbarity, for a government to employ all the resources of its criminal administration to discover the perpetrators, and not, as in this case, throw the whole weight of the investigation upon the sufferers.

The first and chiefest duty of a government is to protect the lives and property not only of its own citizens, but of all others who in the pursuit of peaceable objects settle within its dominions, and the punishment of evil doers, to whatever class, nationality, or position they may belong.

When the governor of Urumia is asked what steps he has taken to satisfy himself of the culpability of these men, he replies “None;” and without instituting any independent inquiry or accepting the testimony of others, for the sake of a bribe, he pronounces the Kurds not guilty. A man who, as governor, demands and receives large sums of money to protect the guilty parties in such a barbarous case is utterly unfit for his position and ought to be removed and replaced by some one sensible of the responsibilities devolving upon such an office.

It is with much regret that I have to complain of the intervention to protect these men of Mirza Hussein Aga, the chief ecclesiastical authority of Urumia, whose religious position should incline him to purge the city and district of crime and transgressions of the law, but who is openly accused of shielding and protecting criminals instead of punishing them.

It is in the midst of such conditions and circumstances that I have to inform your excellency that so long as this governor and mudjtabad (judge) retain their places these men will never be arrested; and this grave situation will become more serious still.

I therefore beg to ask, in order to bring this unhappy case to a conclusion, that these men may be removed from their positions, that new men be appointed, and stronger measures be enforced for the arrest of the culprits.

I take, etc.,

John Tyler.