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Our Lands – Erivan Becoming "Yerevan"

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Baku, 27 February 2018 – Newtimes.az

Actually I was not going to write about it. Mainly because on 8 February 2018 President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev delivered an extensive and substantive speech on country’s domestic and foreign policy during the New Azerbaijan Party’s 4th Convention. However, following the statements by the Armenian, Russian and French officials in response to President Aliyev’s remarks I figured that writing an article was a must.

At the very convention President Ilham Aliyev spoke of Armenia-Azerbaijan relations and mentioned the occupation of our lands by Armenia: "I should also note that we must not forget and are not forgetting our historical lands. This should be a guide for our future activities, just as we are working in this direction today. Our historical lands are the Erivan Khanate, Zangezur and Goycha. The younger generation and the whole world must know this. I am glad that fundamental research papers are being developed, films produced and exhibitions organized in connection with this issue - the history of our ancestral lands. In the coming years, we should be more active in this direction, exhibitions and presentations should be held in different parts of the world because Erivan is our historical land and we, the Azerbaijanis, must return to these historical lands. This is our political and strategic goal, and we must gradually approach it”1.

President Sargsyan of Armenia, Foreign Ministry officials and members of the Parliament started a "tempest in a teapot” on the heels of that statement and tried to spark the debate on the issue far beyond the country’s borders. Before we start analyzing the attitude of Armenia, Russia or France I would like to briefly remind the readers of territorial claims President Sargsyan has made against Azerbaijan and Turkey in the past.    

In 2011, one of the winners of the Armenian language and literature completion, received by President Sargsyan, asked him the following question, "Do you think we will be able to return our Western lands together with Agri Mountain?” This was his answer, "This is up to your generation. For example my generation has accomplished its mission. We have recovered Artsakh (Nagorno Karabakh) - the part of our motherland – from the enemy in the 1990s. Each generation has a duty. And your ability to fulfill your mission will be directly linked with your unity and equality”. The very quote was published on president’s official website. (http://president.am/events/visits/rus/?visits=2&id=290).

In his interview with Thomas de Waal, then the program director at the Carnegie Endowment for Peace, Sargsyan said, "Before Khojali, the Azerbaijanis thought that they were joking with us, they thought that the Armenians were people who could not raise their hand against the civilian population. We were able to break that [stereotype]. And that’s what happened”1. In response to the question on Turkey he did admit the occupation of Azerbaijan’s territory, adding that they had territorial claims against Turkey and when it came to his remarks on Khojaly he did confess to committing genocide against a civilian population.

What is fascinating is that Russia and France that have remained silent about Sargsyan’s remarks have chosen to respond to President Aliyev’s comments on Erivan. There is one delicate aspect to be highlighted. Russia and France that failed to condemn Sargsyan’s war crimes admissions hastily reacted to President Aliyev’s statement. And let us not forget that both countries are the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs.

Just as President Aliyev said at the YAP’s convention, "Our historical lands are the Erivan Khanate, Zangezur and Goycha districts”. Indeed, this is perfectly known both to Russia and France. Yet, under the current circumstances, they lack courage to speak out and instead chose to stand beside Armenia and not Azerbaijan whose territory is under occupation. Below I wish to share, without any comments, the census results published by the Russian authorities after the capture of Erivan Chanate and Nakhchivan by czarist Russia. These statistical figures were obtained from the Russian archives:           

 

Chart 1. Census Results of the Armenian Province (1832. I. Shopen)

 

Name

Muslim

(Azerbaijanis)

Local Armenians

Armenians from Iran

Armenians

From Ottoman Area

Total

1

2

3

4

5

6

 

Family

People

Family

People

Family

People

Family

People

Family

People

1. Erivan  center

1807

7331

567

2369

366

1715

11

48

2751

11463

Districts

1.Girkhbulag

81

383

262

1396

216

1043

38

231

597

3053

2.Zengibasar

910

5413

133

603

442

2360

-

-

1485

8376

3.Gernibasar

753

4176

34

145

1211

5359

-

-

1998

9680

4.Vedibasar

574

3449

2

15

200

1069

-

-

776

4533

5. Sharur

1306

6510

-

-

336

1757

-

-

1641

8267

6.Surmeli

709

4832

935

5892

299

1459

261

1342

20204

13525

7.Derekend-Partsenis

589

3267

1

5

-

-

-

-

590

3272

8.Seedli

160

1004

-

-

-

-

-

-

160

1004

9.Talin

91

420

74

416

-

-

185

1144

350

1980

10.Seyidlı & Agsaggali

311

1754

6

28

-

-

-

-

317

1782

11.Serdarabad

276

1337

469

3214

66

356

4

21

815

5428

12.Korpubasar

400

2592

897

5290

518

2897

35

176

1850

10955

13.Abaran

-

-

11

58

330

2018

1116

6857

1487

8933

14.Derechichek

231

1300

92

552

575

3535

539

3263

1437

8650

15.Goyche

9196

49875

3498

20073

4559

23568

3674

21639

20927

115155

 

Nakhchivan Province

Name  

Muslim

(Azerbaijanis)

Local Armenians

Armenians from Iran 

Armenians from Ottoman Area

Total

1

2

3

4

5

6

Nakhchivan

Family

People

Family

People

Family

People

Family

People

Family

People

Districts

 

1.Alinjechay

909

3641

156

719

265

1110

-

-

1330

5470

2.Nakhchivan

979

4194

150

776

941

4507

-

-

2070

9477

3.Mevazi-Khatun

282

1497

43

224

-

-

-

-

498

2643

4.Hok

292

1375

43

224

-

-

-

-

335

1599

5.Dereleyez

1001

6510

-

-

336

1757

8

27

1574

30507

Total

3893

17138

530

2690

2137

10652

8

27

1574

30507

 

Ordubad Province

Name

Muslims

(Azerbaijanis)

Local Armenians

Armenians from Iran

Armenians from Ottoman Area

Total  

1

2

3

4

5

6

 

Family

People

Family

People

Family

People

Family

People

Family

People

Ordubad Center

767

3262

-

-

36

182

-

-

803

3444

Districts

1.Ordubad

146

552

36

215

14

76

-

-

196

843

2.Eylis

77

347

214

1356

29

183

-

-

320

1886

3.Deste

317

1533

62

346

-

-

-

-

379

1879

4.Bilev

289

1210

39

208

-

-

-

-

499

2317

5.Çennep

79

343

49

263

-

-

-

-

128

606

Total

1675

7247

400

2388

250

1340

-

-

2325

10975

 

Armenian Province

 

Muslims (Azerbaijanis) 

Local Armenians

Armenians from Iran 

Armenians from the Ottoman Area

Yezidi Kurds

Total

Total

16078

81749

4428

25151

6949

35560

3682

21666

67

180

31201

164450

 

CHART 2. Ethnic Groups Within Borders of Present Day Armenia in 1914-1920 

 

1914

1916

1918

1919

1920

 

Thousand Person

Total%

Thousand Person

Total%

Thousand Person

Total%

Thousand Person

Total %

Thousand Person

Total%

Armenians

646,1

65,9

739,9

68,4

931,2

73,3

877,5

91,2

691,0

95,7

Muslims

279,7

28,5

282,5

26,8

290,0

22,8

58,5

6,1

10,0

1,4

Turks

265,1

27,0

167,1

25,4

-

-

-

-

10,0

1,4

Kurds

14,6

1,5

15,4

1,4

-

-

-

-

-

-

Others

55,1

5,6

50,0

4,8

(50,0)

3,9

25,7

2,7

21,0

2,9

Total

980,9

100,0

1052,9

100,0

1271,1

100,0

691,7

100,0

722,0

100,0

 

CHART 3. Armenia’s Ethnic Composition in 1989-2011

Ethnicity

Number of Minorities  by 1989

Number of Minorities  by 2001

 

Number of Minorities by 2011

Yezidis

51 976 (1,6 %)

40 620 (1,3 %)

35 308 (1,2 %)

Russians

51 555 (1,6 %)

14 660 (0,5 %)

11 911 (0,4 %)

Asuris

5 963 (0,2 %)

3 409 (0,1 %)

2 769 (0,09 %)

Kurds

4 151 (0,1 %)

1 519 (0,05 %)

2 162 (0,07 %)

Ukrainians

8 341 (0,2 %)

1 633 (0,05 %)

1 176 (0,04 %)

Greeks

4650 (0,1 %)

1176 (0,04 %)

900 (0,03 %)

Georgians

1 364 (0,3 % of remaining)

696 (0,1 % of remaining)

617 (0,02 %)

Persians

N/A

N/A

476 (0,02 %)

Belarusians

1061 (0,3 % of remaining)

257 (0,1 % of remaining)

N/A

Germans

265 (0,3 % of remaining)

133 (0,1 % of remaining)

N/A

Jews

676 (0,3 % of remaining)

109 (0,1 % of remaining)

N/A

Poles  

270 (0,3 % of remaining)

97 (0,1 % of remaining)

N/A

Hatam Jabbarli

 

Doctor of Political Science

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