On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of massacres in Shushi


Armen Ts. Marukyan-Doctor of Sciences in History
After the perpetration of the massacres of the Armenians of Baku in September 1918, with the assistance of the Turkish army, the authorities of the artificially created state of Azerbaijan tried to extend this criminal policy to the Armenian population of Karabakh. The newly emerged military-political situation in Transcaucasia at the end of World War I gave rise to the hope of the authorities of Azerbaijan that with the active support of the Turks and the tacit consent of the command of the British forces it would be possible to subjugate the Armenian population of Karabakh. Karabakh was strategically important both for the Caucasian Tatars and for the Turks, since in the event of the occupation of the region, as well as of Zangezur and Nakhijevan, firstly, a land connection between Azerbaijan and Turkey would be established, and secondly, the foundations of the so-called Great Azerbaijan would be laid, which was considered one of the important stages in the creation of the imaginary pan-Turkic state of Great Turan.

On the basis of a comparative analysis of the forms and methods of planning and organizing mass killings, as well as the disorganization of the possible opposition of the groups that were the victims of these crimes, this publication thoroughly explores the Turkish trace in the genocidal actions carried out by the Azerbaijani authorities against the Armenian population of Karabakh in 19191920. In this sense, it is very important to disclose the direct participation of Turkish military figures who instructed the Caucasian Tatars and Kurds in the perpetration of massacres of the Armenian population of Karabakh in 1919-1920.

Summarizing, it can be stated that the repeated pogroms of the Armenians of Shushi in June 1919 and March 1920 were not separate crimes against the Armenian population of Karabakh, but together with the mass atrocities of the Armenians of Baku in 1918 were one of the stages of the criminal policy of the Armenian Genocide, which was planned and carried out sequentially by the Young Turks. The pogroms of Armenians of Shushi were carried out by units of the Azerbaijani army and Kurdish gangs under the leadership of high-ranking officers of the Turkish army and the Azerbaijani Governor-General Kh. Sultanov collaborating with them.