Zangazur is one of large territories of present Armenia where Azerbaijanis historically lived. Basing on scientific sources, historical past Zangazur and its districts in a historical sketch of the Azerbaijanis living in Armenia is given.
Before giving a history and geography of cities, settlements and villages Kafan, Goris, Sisian (Garakilsa) and the districts Megrin which are included in present territorial – administrative division of district Zangazur where Azerbaijanis lived, we shall make digression to history Zangazur which purpose is revealing of some the allowed falsifications in histories of this region and representation to readers real histories of these districts.
In all historical literature of Armenia, especially in the Armenian Soviet encyclopedia (in the Armenian language), Zangazur and the districts, which are included in its structure, are given out as a historical territory of Armenia. Replacing the Albanian letters on the ancient Armenian alphabet i.e Grabar naming the Albanian crosses on stones as Gregorian ones want to prove a counterfeit history of this territory. To tell the truth, such falsifications and subjectivity are possible in a history. However, we shall not confuse ancient and medieval histories, and we shall stop on the first quarter of our century, where the question will be Zangazur district of Ganja (Yelizavetpol) province of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic (from May 28, till April 27, 1920) established 90 years later from 1828. (It’s evidently expressed in the map of Azerbaijan, 1920).
After the occupational period of Northern Azerbaijan by Russia (1828) a part of territories Zangelan, Gubadli and Lachin districts of Azerbaijan besides Kafan, Goris, Sisian and Megrin districts, also entered to Zangazur district of Ganja province (which grounds are historically Azerbaijanian ones). 224 197 persons lived in Zangazur in 1920 aggregating 2 233 facilities.
The territory of Zangazur covers the district on the left bank of the Araz River from Megri up to Akary, in the northern part from the highest top of Gapijig Mountains (in 3904 m height) and Khusdub (in 3202 m height) of the Zangazur ridge up to Bargushad Mountains. According to the sources, more than 70 % of the population of district was Azerbaijanians. In the territory of medieval Zangazur a number of historical monuments were artificially forged by Armenians and named as the Gregorian church in order to prove that only Armenians lived here in 7th-10th centuries. It is very strange fact that they knowing that these monuments do not belong to them, do not want to admit it, and on the contrary, declare them as own National Reserve. We shall name some such monuments: ruins of structures from several rooms in 4 km from Shaharjik district of Kafan under the name Vank. In 1965 historians of the Armenian Academy named this monument not Vank but Vagana -Vank (Vagan Church) and registered it. However, on one of stones of a monument on Grabar (ancient Armenian language) the following words have been written: «this monument is constructed by the daughter of the Albanian tsar Sanakerim… in 913 year». The Armenian historians in 1986 wanted to make the same falsification and in Davrus village of Kafan district. When it was found out that in this Albanian Church, there is nothing Armenian and that it belongs to Azerbaijanis, they tried to take away this monument by the machine to lose traces. Inhabitants of village have not enabled Armenian “scientists” to put into practice next false. During archeological excavations, the Armenian scientists in Sisian district (75 % of the population were Azerbaijanis) have found 292 historical monuments. The majority of these monuments belong to Azerbaijanis. The researcher of the Middle Ages, professor Mikayil Heydarov approves that up to 10th centuries in Zangazur the Armenian population hardly lived. Basically it has arrived to these places from Iran in 17th-19th centuries. We wonder how has been taken away Zangazur from the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic.
«In 1920 the district of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic was made 113895, 97 km2». Within the Soviet authority with this district was reduced to 27000 km2 due to territory Zangazur, Irevan, Bayazid, Sharur-Daralayaz and Goychay districts which have been transferred (are presented) to Armenia. This district makes 90% of territory of Armenia. After 1920 only the territory of Zangazur district (Goris, Kafan, Sisian and Megri districts) made 4505,5 km2, that is more than the territory of MGAR of the Azerbaijan SSR.
On research of a history of 1918-1920th both in the USSR, and in our republic, the interdiction has been put, even secrets of the Stalin period are not opened because of not the admission of researchers to these documents. Therefore, till now remains a secret under what decree and why Zangazur has been given to Armenia. Our scientists and researchers last two years have revealed some information on this process, and we shall try to generalize them.
Eldar Namazov, the observer of «The Baku worker» Newspaper recently revealed some documents which enable to open this “secret”. The newspaper writes that joint session of the Political Bureau and Organizational Department of the Azerbaijan Communist Party on November, 30, 1920 was held with participation of Orjonikidze, Stasov, Sarkisov, Yegorov, Kalinin, Serebrovski, Narimanov, Gasimov, Garayev, Huseynov. The decision was accepted in honour of an establishment of the Soviet authority in Armenia. In the decision there were such items «…Zangazur is transferred to Armenia; the Mountainous parts of Karabagh were entitled to self-determination…». The second day Narimanov declared withdrawal of the Azerbaijani troops from Zangazur.
Seventy-two years ago, the “Sheypur” Magazine finely characterized the perspective intentions of Armenians: «Indeed, shame is a good thing. But if persons are shameless, all the same from it all is possible to expect.”
One of such shameless is Andranik Kirva, the commander-in-chief of the government of Armenia commencing extermination of Moslems of Garabagh. The government of Armenia ignoring these acts stealthily encourages it. And consequently there is no need to describe a policy and the purpose of this state».
This government says that neither Georgia nor Azerbaijan may exist on Caucasus. Only Armenia may exist here. All Caucasus should be or Armenia, or is similar to subordinate to Armenia. This national egoism is kept in their blood. After defeat in Turkey before extortion, dashnak general Andranik had been put the following problems: to expel all Azerbaijanis from province Levan and its districts Yeni Bayazid, Sharur-Daralayaz and from districts Zangazur, Shusha, Jabrail, Javanshir provinces of Ganja; to lodge there the Armenian refugees from Turkey and, thus, to grasp at the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic its primordial historical territories. Andranik after bloodshed of babies in Nakhchivan has arrived in Zangazur. First of all, in district Goris where be relative lived Azerbaijanis less, and there has created the staff. In 1918 in Goris has created in Zangazur the Armenian National Council and started to put into practice the artful plans. Andranik with the gangster groups has lifted the small population of Armenians of district Zangazur against the Azerbaijan government and within several months has destroyed more than 200 Azerbaijan settlements.
«Ending the report on the Armenian performances and atrocities I add, that in one district Zangazur it is crushed and plundered 105 (hundred five) settlements, the list which I apply…» Andranik has exterminated, including children, old men, women, more than 10 thousand Azerbaijanis, more than 120 thousand Azerbaijanis became refugees. The population of close villages to Karabagh ran in districts Karabagh, Azerbaijanis of Kafan and Megri ran in winter through mountain roads to Nakhchivan and Ordubad.
In the modern Armenian literature this extortion, general Andranik who was the originator of destruction of Armenians, is known as the national hero of Armenian people. Former first secretary Sisian of regional committee of party Aghakelan in the book “district Sisian” so makes comments on bloody crimes Andranik: «One of significant pages of a history of district is defense of sisans from Turkish invaders. In 1918 when Turkish have taken Nakhchivan, they have tried, having broken resistance Zangazur, through Shusha to get over in Baku…
In that, difficult time the big help of Zangazur rendered the commander of Armenian people Andranik Ozanyan. As wrote in magazine” Sheypur “. Look what impudence: first, Turkish never were in Sisian, second, Andranik and his dashnak armed groups for a long time have been removed from structure of the Armenian armies. They did not submit to the Armenian management. The government of the Armenian republic is not responsible for their irresponsible action».
For precise representation about acts of Armenians, including gangster groups Andranik, we result endurances from the report of a member Azerbaijan extraordinary commissions of Mikhaylov on following Muslim settlements… In addition, the Zangazur district of Ganja province injured of massacres and other violent actions on the part of Armenians.
This district and is in extremely heavy conditions until now, in sense made by Armenians of continuous violence over Moslems. Position of Moslems district in comparison with other provinces of Azerbaijan has worsened still that, besides the armed gangs of the Armenian peasants in this district there is correctly organized significant military unit of the Armenian soldiers under leadership of general Andranik. This last, having, thus, in the hands significant fighting force of soldiers and the armed Armenians – peasants, having intruded in limits of Azerbaijan and, obviously, having instructions of the government of the Armenian Republic, has showed the Muslim population the requirement or to obey authority of Armenians, or to clear territory of district, aspiring to include those in structure of the Armenian Republic. The Moslems of the district, who has been cut off in the settlements from all worlds, not having whence protection and the help, in rare settlements poorly armed, nevertheless have not wished to obey requirements of Armenians. The last have shown monstrous cruelty. Aspiring to expansion of territory of the republic, they did not spare Moslems, even in the event that the last, and refuges, voluntary abandoned the native centers, Armenians all the same burnt, destroyed settlements to the basis, brutally killed inhabitants, stole cattle, took away property of Moslems and flung open their ground districts. Now only Muslim settlements Okhchin of gorge continue courageous protection of the native centers. There is only 1st police station of Sisian mahal in completely destroyed Muslim settlements, the most part of 2nd site, significant – 3rd, 4th, 5th sites. Some settlements it is literally distinguishing with the ground and the last even swings open Armenians, up to 50000 Moslems – refugees were settled in 4-th site of district and in Jabrail district.
Under indications of witnesses and official documents district of 115 settlements were destroyed.
The list of the basic more or less significant settlements of district, in particular or completely destroyed and burnt by Armenians, then it is destroyed up to 10 settlements, not having independent names and consisted from 2 up to 5 houses living in time underground premises.
The listed above settlements are burnt, property of inhabitants were driven away, the cattle is stolen, Armenian occupies territories and Moslems have no access there till now.
In the brief report, there is no opportunity to list on each settlement cases of the separate crimes accomplished by Armenians above Moslems, cases improbable cruelty, brutal murders and tortures, no less than quantity of victims on each settlement, all this is in detail enough stated in business.
On all listed settlements it is killed men 3257, women – 2276 and children – 2196, it is wounded men 1060, women – 794 and children – 485, total in all district there were killed and crippled the Muslim population both floor 10068 persons. However, this awful passion of the Armenian atrocities hardly probable answers the validity and this figure should be considerably increased, as at this awful chaos which has captured district, and at panic flight of Moslems many victims remained obscure.
«Indications of witnesses establish the following scandalous cases of cruelty shown by Armenians. So, 1) in settlement Vagud – 15 most beautiful girls, selected by soldiers of Armenians group, not having transferred burning, dishonor, have died as well of physical sufferings; 2) In the same settlement when 400 Moslems searched refuge during route of settlement have gathered in a mosque, Armenians, having barricaded outputs of a mosque, threw all over again in windows its manual bombs and then burnt a mosque with all people; 3) In the same settlement Moslem Gadam Tahir gizi has been killed by a dagger, her breast have cut off and have put those in a mouth of her baby; 4) In the same settlement, having killed Yolchu Shikh Huseyin oglu, Armenians have cut off to his penis and have put his mouth and killed; 5) In the same settlement very young girls Nisa Aman gizi, Ajab Nuhbali, Sona Jafar and Shahnuli Jalal have been raped to death; 6) In the same settlement Gulbasti Gasim has been killed, her breasts was cut off and in a back ridge beaten a horseshoe; 7) In villages Nuvedi, Armenians have pinned up bayonets centenary head Asad bey Melik Abbasov, laying without movement in bed; 8) In the same settlement Armenians checkers and daggers chopped off heads to the run women and children in streets; 9) On streets in villages Sheki corpses of women with the cut off breasts and half-and-half split corpses of small children laid; 10) In villages. Imishli during route Armenians lifted on bayonets of chest babies, corpses killed have been found split on pieces; 11) In villages Agudi, Armenians demanded from Moslems of acceptance of Christianity, have cut off breasts of women and put them in a mouth of babies; 12) In villages Agudi, Armenians have chopped off finiteness of legs alive Gulam Ampur Shakar oglu, and then injections of bayonets and lashed have forced him to go on legs while he has not died of loss of blood; 13) In the same settlement have been raped and then all beautiful girls are killed; 14) In villages Chullu – Armenians have killed daggers of 9 patients laying in bed; 15) In villages Baghibeyli Armenians have collected in one house of 7 men and the woman and alive burnt them together with the house; 16) In villages Musulmanlar – corpses have been so spoiled and disfigured, that it was impossible to find out, to whom they belong, – and without hands, legs, and heads; 17) In villages Qatar honorable old man Meshadi Kalandar Meshadi Gulu has been killed, was killed by kerosene and is burnt; 18) In the same settlement Armenians have bound hand and foot Kerbala Allahverdi Huseyn Ali and cut to him a throat; 19) In villages Vartanazur – it was especially cut many daggers of women and children…
The brief and not full list of sufferings of Muslim people entrance. Cases of brutal murders, tortures, violence of women are so numerous, that in the present report of them to not list. Witnesses certify that such crimes occurred almost in each crushed settlement.
The overwhelming quantity of Muslim settlements is crushed and burnt at intrusion into districts of the general of Armenian armies of Andranik, and under the certificate of many witnesses massacres have taken place, probably, under common management, from his name were demanded humility. Events were occurred at the end of a summer and autumn of 1918.
Properly, Andranik basing on the material and moral help of external and internal force of dashnak has put before itself problems: creation dashnak Armenia, exile of all Azerbaijanis from districts of Azerbaijan and Armenia where Armenians lived, to Azerbaijanis for act of Turkish and creation of «Great Armenia».
Considering Andranik bloodsheds in Shusha, Zangazur, Javanshir and Jabrail districts of Ganja (Yelizavetpol) province, have been made the report to the government of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic where it is spoken:
«Since times of the Russian revolution and formation of the Transcaucasia government the Armenians occupying mountainous parts Zangazur, Shusha and the next districts, under influence of propagandists dashnak have started to show aspiration to isolate and form own large administrative units. On this ground, cases of disobedience to authorities have become frequent and there were excitements.
After branch of Azerbaijan, aspiration of Armenians of the same mountainous parts to be isolated has accepted under influence of the amplified propaganda dashnak even more certain form, to be separated from Azerbaijan as only Muslim, and to join again formed republic Ararat. Again formed Azerbaijan government to which had to work much for watering the comparative order in the central places, even in the residence, naturally, could not react properly to occurrence in such, as Shusha, Karyagin, Javanshir and Zangazur the remote districts of movements, not having for itself not only physical strength, but also in view of the private termination of the message in the most part of Azerbaijan. Consequence of all it was non-recognition mostly the Armenian population mountainous parts of the named districts of the Azerbaijan government and, certainly, the hostile relation to Moslems, as to supporters of this government. Position has even more become aggravated with occurrence in those places of military Armenian parts under leadership Andranik, “campaign” which has frankly declared the purpose: tearing away of a part of territory from Azerbaijan and connection to Armenia. Have appeared and they from the local population, set by the same purpose, but often not disdaining robberies, violence and murders. About 150 Muslim settlements it is ruined and plundered in that district, and the weight of refugees a stream has rushed in lowland, in Aghdam and other places.
In view of these reasons, I find urgently and urgently necessary to found a post of the Time general – governor for Shusha, Zangazur, Javanshir and Jabrail districts with a residence in Shusha, which to give the right and powers on the bases specified in Appendix I of item of the Charter about the prevention and suppression of crimes (an item 14-31) and to subordinate to it in its district weight of establishment and all officials, except for judicial and representatives of the state control. Tasks which should be given to the Time general – governor are those: struggle and full liquidation of the Armenian movement, final watering the order in the mentioned above districts, the organization of local authorities, the organization of the foodstuffs for refugees and rendering of the help by him, the organization of struggle against epidemics both among refugees, and among indigenous population and, at last, after calm, watering refugees on places of their native land.
Stated I have honour to present on the sanction of the government»
Minister of Internal Affairs
The Azerbaijan government in the same year (1918) has appointed doctor Sultanova as the general governor of above-stated districts. Minister of Foreign Affairs of Armenia S. Tigranyan on February, 26, 1919 in the message to the general of the British forces Thomson (in Tiflis) has expressed the protest about creation of a post of the general – governor in districts of the Azerbaijan government, informed, that there is the Council of the Armenian government in Goris (it means that the Armenian National Council of Zangazur was created in Goris by Andranik) in this connection demands that the general governorship has stopped the activity. This letter to Tigranyan Thomson has played a main role in destiny of future Zangazur.
«In the letter to Thomson I was interested one expression which sense is not opened in the letter and in other documents. There the following has been stated: «I have specified the decision of Peace conference from January, 24 under which decision Azerbaijan should refrain from display of the violent certificates directed to change».
Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic Ziyadhanov has given the neat answer to Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Armenian Republic and has acquainted the public with essence of event. He wrote: «The protest of your government against the decision about establishment of the Time general – governorship in Javanshir, Shusha, Jabrail and Zangazur districts of the Azerbaijan Republic is not thorough as these districts make conclusive and an integral part of Azerbaijan. Not only legal, but even the moral duty of the Azerbaijan government by way of the Supreme Management to arrange for restoration of the order and protection in the territory of a life, honour and property of the citizens without distinction of nationalities from an arbitrariness of irresponsible persons. Therefore the decision of our government about purpose of the general – governor cannot be considered as an encroachment on territorial rights of Armenia at all whereas the protest of your government in this occasion can be considered as an encroachment on our sovereignty with attempt of intervention in our internal affairs».
In body of party “Dashnaktsutun” the newspaper «Jogovurdzyan» («the Voice of people»), issued in Irevan, has been published article showing borders of Armenia. Here entered neither a little, nor much all provinces Irevan, all territory of Kars (in Turkey), the most part of province Tiflis, 6 districts Ganja province, including district Zangazur. Probably, in statistical letters dashnak one of problems is delivery Zangazur of Armenia. In November 1919 favorable conditions for the sanction of disputable territorial questions have been created by peace way. From documents of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (1919) it is found out, that after the conclusion of the contract between Georgia and Azerbaijan the relation between Armenia and Azerbaijan has improved. Where in documents is spoken: «As to mutual relations with Armenia the policy of the government of last to the Muslim population of some districts as, for example, Nakhchivan, Sharur-Daralayaza, Boyuk Vadi also others, and also in Karabagh and on Zangazur the questions, carrying in the beginning aggressive and irreconcilable character, after the long diplomatic relations caused even intervention of foreign powers on behalf of England and America, has led to agreement on November, 2 between prime-ministers of republics of Armenia and Azerbaijan and to convocation of the Armenian-Azerbaijan conference which have begun the work on December, 14, 1919, but about results of conference we have found nothing.
At last dashnak, the government has reached the artful purpose. In November, 1920 a foreign Armenian lobby, the Russian Armenians, Russian government have shown mercy to «poor Armenians», have given Armenia of territory of the primordial Azerbaijan grounds of 4505,5 km (Kafan, Megri, Sisian).
After falling the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic chairman Revolutions: about committee of Azerbaijan., the member of Caucasian Regional Committee Nariman Narimanov wrote in the letter to Minister of Foreign Affairs of RSFSR Chicherin: «As to ostensibly disputable Zangazur and Garabagh, already including in structure of the Soviet Azerbaijan, categorically I declare, that these places undoubtedly and henceforth should be within the limits of Azerbaijan».
In the official report from October 2, 1918 of chief of Zangazur district of Ganja governor is spoken, that only current of 9 months of this year Armenians have killed 677 Azerbaijanis in Zangazur. Cost of damage makes 51.390.000 roubles The Purpose – from all Zangazur to supersede and expel the Azerbaijan population and to connect it to Armenia. The survival of Azerbaijanis from Zangazur has accepted the big scale in this connection at 2nd congress of Councils of the Azerbaijan SSR the special inquiry has been made: whether «the Government knows, what in district Zangazur peace inhabitants are violently expelled with its primordial grounds, and what measures are accepted» These information are delivered in the Central Electoral Committee. Requirements have been put before government of Armenia.
Announcements of Ararat government are exposed in some settlement about joint of all districts of Zangazur to the marked government.
Thus they have aimed, if forces will suffice on it, to cut out all Muslim population Zangazur, Sharur, Nakhichevan and Ordubad districts “to clear” all districts of Moslems that on the future Peace conference of peoples to prove the rights on these territories and to declare their Armenian as free districts from Moslems recognize all peoples for Armenians. For this reason Armenians in thousand cut out our inhabitants, streams our blood flows, painting steppes and mountains, hundreds settlements razed to the ground»
Andranik, military minister Dro and destroyed all Azerbaijan villages Zangazur in 1918-1919 the purpose could not achieve, expel all Azerbaijanis from Zangazur. Because after an establishment of the Soviet authority in Armenia the most part of the Azerbaijan refugees could return to the native centers. On the statistical information in 1950th Azerbaijanis made the majority of the population in some districts of Zangazur.
However, sons and grandsons dashnak have put into practice their dream. In 1988 in connection with an invented Garabagh problem Azerbaijanis violently have expelled at the state level from all districts of Zangazur. In 1988 have put monument of Njde in Kafan district. At opening of a monument the secretary of a district committee of a party has acted. He has told that our commander Njdeh did not manage to expel in 1918 all Azerbaijanis from Zangazur, but its grandsons have put into practice this dream. Now we can sigh freely.
We in detail have not opened a theme of refugees Zangazur in 1988 as about all districts Zangazur the geographical sketch is given.