Karabakh is one of the ancient regions of Azerbaijan. The word Karabakh given by the Azerbaijan nation to a part of their native lands was used for the first time 1,300 years ago (in the 7th century)!?. At first, Karabakh was used as a historical-geographical definition, but it later transformed to cover a larger geographical area. By the way, this aspect is very typical for Azerbaijan: Nakhchivan city – Nakhchivan region, Sheki city – Shaki region, Ganja city – Ganja region, Lenkoran city- Lenkoran region and etc.
The history of the formation of Karabakh as a name of one particular region, provides a better scientific explanation for its etymology. Because the word “gara” has other meanings in Azerbaijani language (also in other Turkic languages) as well – such as “sih” (dense), “galin” (thick), “boyuk” (big, large), “tund” (strong), and others. From this point of view the term Karabakh gets such meanings as “gara bag” (dark garden), that is “boyuk bag” (a large garden), “six bag” (a dense garden), “galin bag” (a thick garden), “safali bag” (a picturesque garden) and others.
About the territory of Karabakh its regent Mirza Jamal Javanshir in consideration of this question in his work the “History of Karabakh” (1847) wrote: “According to the ancient historical books the frontiers of Karabakh are: from the southn the river Araz, from Khudafarin Bridge to Sinig Bridge. At present (Siniq Bridge) is among the population of Gazakh, Shamseddin and Demerchi-Hesenly and Russians call it using the Russian term Krasniy Most that is the Red Bridge. From the east it is the Kura River, which flows into the Araz River in Javad village and flows into the Caspian Sea. From the north the frontier of Karabakh with Yelizavetpol is till Kura river – the Goran River, and the Kura River crosses it in many parts and riches the Araz River. From the west are the high mountains of Karabakh called Kusbek, Salvarti, Erikli
Such a detailed description of the territory and frontiers of Karabakh at the first stages of Russian occupation and colonization are explained by the following factors: 1) this fact is described by an official person directly connected with the government of Karabakh, in other words, this fact is reflected in an official document composed by an official representative of Russia; 2) on the other hand this fact is not only based at practices and realities, but it also finds reflection in the references. It is not occasional that ancient books are used to prove the position of Mirza Jamal.
There was a general definition of Karabakh, which was not used only for Daghlig Garabagh, but for both mountainous and plain parts. In other words, the word combination of “Daglig Garabag” (Mountainous Karabakh) is a product of the subsequent periods, the name given to the one of the part of Karabakh as a result of separatist intentions.
Karabakh – since ancient times up to the period of khanates
Karabakh is one of the most ancient regions of not only Azerbaijan but also the entire world. The site of the most ancient human beings was found in the Azykh cave of this region. It proves Azerbaijan to be one of the cradles of the mankind along with Karabakh, the Mediterranean Sea basin and East Africa.
The jaw bone of the Azykh human -Azykhantrope was found in the Acheulian layer of the Azykh cave in 1968. The Azykhantrope is proposed to live 350-400 thousand years ago. The mustye culture of Karabakh was mainly represented by the Taghlar cave.
Great changes occurred in the life of Karabakh in the neolite (6-4th millenniums B.C.), bronze and the first iron age (late 4th-early 1 millenniums B.C.). The late Bronze and early iron ages (13-8th centuries B.C) were called the Khodjaly-Gedebey culture. The agate beads with the cuneiform once belonging to the Assyria ruler Adad nirar were found in the archeological monument of the Khodjaly cemetery of that period. These findings and a number of others confirm the existence of economic and culture relations with the Near East.
Ethno-political processes developed along with the industrial and cultural ones. The strong state Manna appeared in the south of Azerbaijan (9-6 centuries B.C), and it managed to protect its independence in the fight with Assyria and Urartu. Urartu’s intervention bypassed the lands of the North Azerbaijan including Karabakh. Armenian ethnos did not exist at that time in the South Caucasus (Transcaucasia). Prominent researches, collective monographs authors expressed unanimous views on the political history of Transcaucasia. The major part of Urartu was located out of the bounds of USSR. The areas of compact settlement of Armenians of the ancient period and Middle Ages were also out of the bounds of the present-day Armenia SSR. The situation changed in times of the Midia state (672-550 B.C) that put an end to the wealth of Urartu. Midia subdued the South-Eastern Transcaucasia. Such a state were typical of the Akhameni period (550-330 B.C).
The political processes stepped to a new stage following the overthrow of the Ahameni state by Macedonian Alexander. As a result of that after the death of Macedonian Alexander that ruled for a short period of time, his empire fell into a number of states and Atropatena appeared in the south of Azerbaijan, while Albania -in the north.
Atropatena owned the north lands of Azerbaijan in the 4th B.C and part of the lands that constituted Karabakh were subdued to that very state.
Albania that established simultaneously with Atropatena existed in the 4-8th centuries B.C and played a great role in the history of Azerbaijan of nearly 1200 years. Albania covered the entire territory of Karabakh and it did everything possible to hold this region in its hands and reached its aim with few exceptions.
Likewise Karabakh belonged to Azerbaijani Albania state, the ethnic communities residing there-uti, sovdey, qargar and others were also Albanian tribes. Armenians first appeared in the South Caucasus (Transcaucasia) after the 2nd century B.C. Their aggressive activity against local states and peoples started with their settlement in these regions. At that time Armenians called the Armenian kingdom in the east of the Asia Minor the Great Armenia and tried to introduce the lands in which they settled as their own.
As a result of the defeat of Tigran the Second by the Roman Empire in 66 B.C the false legend about the Great Armenia failed and Armenians were turned into the vassals of the Roman Empire. The situation remained changeless till the 4th century. Azerbaijan-Albania state continued its independent policy and included the historical province Karabakh.
The all-Turk prominent monument of the oral folklore literature epos Kitabi Dede Gorgut also proves that Karabakh belongs to Azerbaijan and different Turkic tribes lived in the country. The epos Dede Gorgut was widely spread in all the regions of Azerbaijan including Karabakh and the basin of the Goycha lake in the 6-7th centuries. As stated in this valuable national epos, some oghuz heroes even met with him to express their respect. The famous Oghuzname (from the Kitabi-Diyarbekir written by Abu Bekr Tehrani in 1470) written by the instruction of the Aggoyunlu ruler Uzun Gasan (1453-1478) proved that the Goycha lake pastures and Karabakh belonged to ancient oghuz turks, that the forefather of the oghuz turks Oghuz Khagan was buried on the Goycha lake shore and that Bayandur khagan lived and buried in Karabakh on the Goycha lake pastures.
The dramatic changes occurred in the history of Karabakh with the intervention of Arabian Caliphate and the downfall of Albania. Before Arabian intervention the ethnic composition of the historical population of Karabakh had been homogeneous that is all the tribes generated from Azeri-Arbanian roots while as a result of the tragic policy of Arabic caliphate the religion of Armenians dominated in the mountain regions of the province and later this process occurred in the ethnic field as well: the population of the historical region of Albania Arsakh was first converted to gregorianity and later armenified.
The 19th-early 13th centuries, the period of the Sadjids-Atabeys-Shirvanshahs were the times pf the strengthening of Azerbaijan in the entire South Caucasus. In fact Sadjids and Atabeys unified the historical lands of Azerbaijan.
The Khachyn principality, established on the territory of the former Albania reached the highest level of its development in times of Gasan Djelal (1215-1261) from the dynasty of Mehranies. He is known as the prince of the Khachyn states, the mighty prince of the Khachyn and Arsakh states as well as the ruler of Albania in the narrative and epigraphic monuments of that period. In other words, the great titles of Gasan Djalal related to the history of Azerbaijani Albania. One of the most wonderful pearls of Albanian architecture-the Ganzasar monastery was erected at that period…
In period of the ruling of Kharezmshah Djelaleddin, that ruined Atabeys state weakened by the first intervention of Mongolians (1220-1222) Karabakh was controlled by him (1225-1231). In period of the second intervention of Mongolians and the completion of Azerbaijan’s occupation (1231-1239) Karabakh like other lands of Azerbaijan was part of the Mongolian khaganate (1239-1256) and later of Hulakues (Elkhanies ) state (1256-1357). The information of this period of Karabakh’s history is much wider and well studied It would be enough to say that two of the Mongolian rulers (Gazan khan and Arpa khan) ascended the throne in Karabakh and two others (Argun khan and Abu Said) died there
In the 15th century Karabakh was part of the Azeri states Garagoyunlu (1410-1467) and Aggoyunlu (1468-1501). Yet in times of Garagoyunlus an event occurred in the life of Karabakh which told on its further history. The dynasty of the former Albanian ruler Gasan Djelal (Djelali) was attached the title of the melik (ruler) from the Garagoyunlu shah Djahan in the 15th century. Later the property of Djelalis was dividec in five feudal principalities (Gulistan, Djeravert, Khachyn, Varanda and Dizaq)…
The centralization of all the lands of Azerbaijan was initiated with the establishment of the Sefevi state (1501). The lands of Azerbaijan were completely centralized as a single state in the mid 16th century. Thus, the Sefeli state of Azerbaijan became the second larger region after the Osmanly empire. At that period the ethnic and political predominance of Armenians was not possible. On the contrary, the ethnic and political borders of Azerbaijan became clearer then.
Sefevis established four principalities in Azerbaijan including the Karabakh or Ganja province. The detailed journals worked out in that regions creates clear picture of the administrative division of the said principality. According to the date of 1593 the Ganja-Karabakh province fell into 7 regions and 36 districts. Almost all of 1.3 thousand geographical names were taken from Azeri language. After the Sefevies lost their strong positions, the lands of Azerbaijan became the center of wars between, Iran, Russian and the Osmanly empire.
At that period the Ganja-Karabakh lands were part of the Osmanly empire. The journals worked out in times of the Osmanly empire also prove the domination of Azerbaijanis among the region’s population. According to the census enumerations the population of the Ganja-Karabakh province totaled 122 thousand people in 1727. Azerbaijanis accounted for 80.3 thousand people (66%), Armenians (if exactly the armenified Albanians converted to gregorianism) -for 37.8 thousand people (31%), Kurds-for 3.7 thousand people (3.1%).
At the reported period the Albanians that were converted to gregorianism intensified their political activity under the active support of Russia.
Nadir shah Afshar who came to power overthrowing the last Sefevi ruler Abbas the third applied cruel punitive measures to the Turkic-Muslim population of the Ganja-Karabakh province that did not recognize his government. This factor helped consolidation of the Karabakh Albanian meliks and provoked the separatism. After the death of Nadir his state fell into pieces and new states-khanates were established in Azerbaijan. In other words, Azerbaijan restored its independence through creation of such states. Two Azeri khanates Ganja and Karabakh established on the territory of the former Ganja-Karabakh province.
After the overthrow of the Afshar Empire led by Nadir Shah the prominent state official Panahali bey Djavanshir founded one of independent states of Azerbaijan – Karabakh.
He for some time worked under Nadir shah. Yet after the Mughan congress Nadir laid punishment on those Karabakhians who did not recognize his power and exiled Muslim population to Afghanistan and Khorasan.
Panahali’s brother Farzali khan, who protested against these measures was put to death. In period of the Shakh staying in Khorasan, Panahali bey took the occasion and run away to Karabakh province together with his relatives and closes in 1737-1738. Shah informed about his escape sent couriers after him to prevent him from running away. Nadir shah instructed the leaders of Azerbaijan, Ganja, Tiflis and Shirvan to catch Panah khan wherever they see him and send to the shah’s residence. Though by the order of the shah Panahali and his family were tormented and set a penalty, that did not work.
Thus, Panah ali khan dodged the responsibility to subdue to Nadir shah and bid to rule his native Karabakh in the most democratic way. As a result, an independent Azeri state-Karabakh khanate established following the death of Nadir shah.
After the declaration of the establishment of independent Karabakh khanate the main goal was to strengthen it. The first measure taken by Panakhali was to return those Muslims driven by Nadir shah to their native land. The return of displaced families and their resettlement of their native land strengthened Karabakh khanate. The future khan of Karabakh 15 year-old Ibrahimkhalil was among those who had been first to return.
In period of Karabakh khanate establishment it did not comprise cities as Tebriz, Ardebil, Ganja, Shamakhy, Baky, Nakhichevan, Sheki, Derbend. However, the existence of such politico-economic centers would play a great role in the further development of the khanate. Beside military-political works Panah Ali also made a great progress in the military installations and establishment of towns.
One of the first steps taken in this sphere was the construction of the Bayaty tower named after the ancient Azeri-Turkish tribes bayats in 1748.
Panah khan’s activity in the sphere of creation of an independent state promoted his official recognition. An unsuccessful Bayat raid of Sheki khan Hajy Chelebi in 1748 to Karabakh played a great role in the recognition of Panah Alia as a leader of Karabakh khanate. At the same time the Bayaty battle proved the vulnerability of the tower to further historical events. Therefore, it was necessary to construct a new one. In 1751 the construction of tower (Shusha) was completed and khan settled there.
With the strengthening of Panah khan the feudal lords-monarchs, supporting scarcity, increased their subversive activity. It was necessary to prevent that by some military methods. Otherwise, the khanate would lose its territorial integrity. The original sources also confirm that.
Thus, historical facts show that except for Khachyn other four melikhood of Karabakh and their ancestors were not the native Karabakh residents and they had moved to the region from other places. They were not Armenians, they represented former Albanian generations. Therefore, it’s incorrect to justify the territorial claims of Armenian nationalists and to regard the said malikhoods (rulers) as the followers of Armenian state structure. On the other hand, alien rulers after the capture of power in Karabakh did not manage to unite the country. They lived isolated and could not overcome the limits of leaders feuding with each other.
Melik Shahnazar was the first among the five feudal lands to recognize Panah Ali’s power. That was due to the marriage of Ibrahimkhalil to Melik Shahnazar’s daughter Hurzat.
After the defeat of Khachyn melik at Ulubab Ballygaya he recognized the power of Panah khan, while the hostile policy of Dizag, Chilebord and Talish lands lasted for several years.
The path of Panakh Ali’s progress in overriding the feudal lands was followed by his son Ibrahim khan.
Among the Karabakh feudal lands, Melik Yesay of Dizaq, Medjnun of Chilebord and Beyleryan of Gulistan refused to subdue to Ibrahim, while Melik Shahnazar of Varanda and Mirza khan of Khachyn recognized his power and joined the patriotic troops created by Ibrahim.
The allies encircled the Tug tower in 1781. Melik Yesay surrendered and the power transferred to Melik Bahtam. Soon he turned out to be a betrayer as well.
Beginning from 1783 Russia also started to interfere with Ibrahim khan’s struggle against separatist meliks. By the help of local meliks Russia, willing to occupy South Caucasus attempted to establish a Christian state or the support for itself in Azerbaijan. At that time owing to his high diplomatic capacities Panahali managed to assemble all hostile meliks in Shusha. Proving their betrayal by some documents he imprisoned all of them.
Melik Medjnun was imprisoned while Melik Bahtan due to his misdemeanors was delivered to the khan of Ardebil..
Agha Mohamed Gajar (1742-1797), who seized power in Iran in the summer of 1795, attacked Karabakh khanate. The 33-day encirclement of Shusha was failed. After Shusha he moved on Tbilisi.. Agha Mohamed Qajar again attacked Karabakh, occupied Shusha but self was killed there in 1797.
The invasive activity of Russia strengthened in the South Caucasus, including Azerbaijan in late 18th-early 19th century. In 1801 Georgia was annexed to the empire, Azerbaijan’s Djar-Belokan (1803) community and Ganja khanate (1804) were occupied.
Under such conditions Ibrahim khan concluded an agreement with the commander of Russian troops P.D.Sisianov (1802-1806) in Kurekchay. The agreement stipulated for Karabakh khanate to be annexed to Russia as a Muslim country-the Azerbaijani land. The Kurekchay agreement, that reflected the reality, is the most reliable document which proved that Karabakh, including its mountainous part, belongs to Azerbaijan.
Garabaghnames (Annals of Garabagh)
To study political, economic and cultural history Garabagh khanate, one of the oldest areas of Azerbaijan from historical point of view it is suffice to read following works, which are source of valuable information: “Qarabaghnama” of Mirza Adigozal bey, “History of Garabagh” of Mirza Jamal Bey Javanshir Garabagi, “On political situation in the Garabagh khanate in 1747-1805” of Ahmad Bey Javanshir, “Tarikhi-safi” of Mirza Yusuf Garabagi, “Kitabi-tarikhi-Garabagh” of Mir Mehdi Khazani, “Garabagh powers of Panah khan and Ibrahimkhalil khan and the events of that time” of Rzagulu bay Mirza Jamal oglu, “Tarikhi-jadidi-Garabagh” of Mirza Rahim Fana, “Ahvalati-Garabagh” of M. Baharly, “The history of the Shusha town” Hasan Ikhfa Alizade, ” The ancient and modern properties and features of Garabagh region” of Hasanali Khan Qaradagi and “Gulistan-Iram” of Abbasgulu agha Bakhikhanov.
As “Qarabagnama” was chronicle of the events and reflected the events occurred in the history of the same period so they mostly repeat each other. It can not be the in other way. Thorough analysis of chronicles of events allows us to come to a conclusion that as all other Azerbaijani khanate the formation of Garabagh khanate was one of the results of socio-economic and socio-political processes of that period.
Because of “Qarabagnama” were not published for a long period led to its remaining aside from the analysis and study of historian-scientists. While study these valuable historical annals thoroughly one can find valuable information in them related to objective reviewing of complex socio-political processes occurred in the life of Garabagh in XVIII century and the early of XIX century, but also the whole North and South Azerbaijan, South Caucasus and Front Asia, clarification of some darks points, to unmask the insidious lies spread to the world by notorious Armenians.
The analysis of sources clearly proves once again that the Garabagh khanate was established as the feudal state of Azerbaijan and joined the Russian Empire in this way. Kurekchay Treaty dated May 14, 1805 was signed by Khan of Garabagh Ibrahimkhalil khan Javanshir together with the Sisianov.
The authors chronicle provide extensive information about the historical geography of Garabagh, political events taking place inside and outside of it, about historical monuments built in the city during reign of Panahali khan and Ibrahimkhalil khan. This information allows clarifying the history of our nation, welfare, economy, life style and a number of important historical processes occurred in the second half of the XVIII century.
It to be taken into account annals of Mirza Adigozal bey and Mirza Jamal Bey Javanshir Garabagi were written by order of representatives of Russian Empire in the South Caucasus. Both historians Served in state institutions of the Russian Empire. This point requires careful approach to valuable resources in these annals related to the Russian policy in many cases; make them reveal the truth thanks to matching it with other works.
Mirza Adigozal bey’s “Qarabagnama” particularly distinguished for the historical content.
Mirza Jamal Javanshir Garabagi’s “History of Garabagh” work is very rich in comparison with other annals. The author describes in details the periods of reign of Panahali Khan and Ibrahimkhalil khan, gives historical events in a sequence. Mirza Jamal Bey Javanshir in his work reflects in details social and economic status of Garabagh, agriculture, irrigation network, cultivated plants, property of khans and their relatives, income and expenses, the military forces and etc. Mirza Jamal’s chronicle despite the limited features of the period of life of an author, in comparison with other “Qarabagnama” has the great advantages.
Mirza Yusuf Garabagi’s “Tarikhi-safi’ work does not differ from the previous annals so seriously. He repeats the historical events described by Mirza Adigozal bey and Mirza Jamal Javanshir. Different aspect of the work of the author is that he gives more places to Armenian nationalism in his work. Therefore, the work of Mirza Yusuf Garabagi should be treated more critically.
Work of Ahmad Bey Javanshir “On political situation in the Garabagh khanate in 1747-1805” occupies a special place among other chronicles. It should be noted that the Ahmad Bey Javanshir when speaking about his work noted that sources that he used were works of Mirza Adigozal bey, Mirza Jamal bey and other sources. One of the different features of the work of Javanshir Ahmad bey is that he paid certain attention on the Treaty of Kurekchay. In work of Ahmed bey ill-will against Ibrahimkhalil khan clearly shows itself. The author tries to justify Mohammed bey Javanshir without any reason for that.
“Kitabi-tarikhi-Garabagh” of Mirza Mehdi Khazani is little hard work for the language and style, but from historical context it is very important. He gave more space to issues related to the culture of Garabagh in his work. This is a very important source to create an idyllic picture of the culture of Azerbaijan at the early of the XIX century.
“Garabagh powers of Panah khan and Ibrahimkhalil khan and the events of that time” of Rzagulu bey Mirza Jamal oglu as he confessed, consists of a brief summary of his father’s work. But in any case there are a number of additional materials in Rzagulu bey’s annals that they may be useful for writing in details the history of that period.
As some parts of “Tarikhi-jadidi-Garabagh” work of Mirza Rahim Fana were not received, so it is impossible to get a full idea on it. In this work the author as if repeats all annals written before. In any case, the chronicle of Rahim Mirza Fana has number patterns in full writing the history Garabagh. The information given in work causes an interest particularly in terms of understanding the socio-political climate of that period.
One of annals written on the history of Garabagh khanate is work of “Ahvalati-Garabagh” of M. Baharlı. The author give more places in his work to its architectural monuments, historical persons, customs and traditions, ethnography rather than history of Garabagh. In conditions of lacks of sources on the culture of Azerbaijan, in particular, on the culture of the Middle Ages, this is a very valuable source.
Hasan Ikhfa Alizade wrote a work “History of Shusha town”. In his work he followed the events in the life of Shusha town, the center of Garabagh khanate since laying of its foundation, and translated the stone inscriptions on mosques.
One of the annals dedicated to history of the Garabagh is a work “The ancient and modern properties and features of Garabagh region” of Hasanali khan Qaradagi. This work is very imperfect and incomplete. The author provides little information about the historical monuments of Garabagh.
In work “Gulistan-Iram” of Abbasgulu agha Bakikhanov a lot of historical information relating to the history of Garabagh was collected. The author systematized in very interesting and easy to read form the information gathered on historical geography and ethnography of Garabagh in the fifth chapter of the work.
A. A. Bakikhanov notes that despite local wars during the period of independent states of the khanates, there was some considerable progress in the development of productive forces in the XIX century, and the division of the homeland between the Gadjars and the Romanovs at the first decades of XIX century had a heavy blows on Azerbaijan, its socio-economic, cultural and political life, and by help of Russian colonialists the foundation of our present largest disaster was laid.
“Qarabaghnama” doe not provide information about the Armenian element. Because the Armenian element was brought in Garabagh in the early of the XIX century by the Russian colonialists and the foundation of all disasters with our people for the past 15-20 years was laid namely at that period, at the beginning of the XIX century with resettlement of the Armenians in the territories of Azerbaijan, as well as in Garabagh.
Resettlement of Armenians in Garabagh
Establishment of the Armenian state under the auspices Russia, as well as the resettlement of Armenians from Iran and Turkey on land occupied by the Russia was not a coincidence rather it was a natural result of the Armenian-Russian relations. The base of these relations as it was propagated in the Russian and Armenian historical literature was not only trade relations, but the attitude of hostility against Muslim states of the East, especially Turkey and since the XVIII century against Azerbaijan.
Armenian-Russian relations were expanded with Russia’s occupation of Kazan (1552) and Hastarkhan (1556), wars with Turkey (1635-1639,1711,1768-1774, 1787-1791, etc.) and further strengthened by its attempts to conquer the lands of the Caspian Sea coast. Resettlement of the Armenians in Russia during the course of these events and creation of the Armenian colonies here begins. In the present case the decree of Peter I played a big role for the Armenian people (October 10, 1724). According to this decree, the consent was given for resettlement of Armenians in lands occupied by Russia and their accommodation This political line of Peter I was followed by his successors over a century later. Russian victory at the years 1804-1813 in Russian-Iranian war and signing of the “Treaty of Gulistan” for division of Azerbaijan and consolidation once again strongly supported this policy. During 1826-1828 years at course of Russian-Iranian war after seize of Yerevan this plan began to be implemented.
Armenian cathalicos Nerses Astaraketsi developed the project on resettlement. A.S.Griboyedov also played a major role in the development and implementation of this plan. Nerses was writing to Yegiazar Lazarian invited from Petersburg in November 1827 for heading the Armenian resettlement and at that time being in Tabriz: “Now I asked Mr. A.S.Griboyedov, faithful advocate our Armenian nation no to forget my request about Christian prisoners of war and requested for accepting them everywhere under the powerful Russian banner … I also asked from him about all of the Armenians in Iran and now I am writing to him ask asking: To instruct Ivan Fyodorovich Paskovich not to forget include in the contract an Article on returning of Armenians freely under the patronage of Greta Russian empire, living in village and towns under the Iranian rule.
Article XV of “Treaty of Turkmenchay” signed on February 10, 1828 envisaged resettlement of the Armenians. From Article XV: “The King Excellency… grant the full pardon to all the people of the region and officials of province named Azerbaijan… In addition, those officials and residents, together with his families, starting from today is given a time of one year for free leaving of Iranian province to Russia, not imposing any customs duty and taxes by the government and any local authority on their goods or property and allowing to take it without any hindrance. Regarding immovable property the period of five years is granted for its sale or voluntary disposal on it.”
Committees to organize the resettlement of Armenians were established in Yerevan and Nakhchivan. Displaced persons were given the most important benefits: they were exempted for 6 years from taxes and charges; at the expense of compensation from Iran they were granted funds, etc. After some preparatory measures the resettlement was started. 40-50 thousand Armenians were brought from ran. During the course of Russian-Turkish war in 1828-1829 and after the war 90 thousand Armenians moved from Turkey. Resettlement of the Armenians from Iran, Turkey and other Eastern countries to Russia was continued in the forthcoming years. The main direction of the resettlement was Trans-Caucasus. N.I.Shavrov in wrote 1911: “At present, from 1 million 300 thousand Armenians living in the Caucasus more than 1 million is not aboriginal and was moved by us.”
When Armenians moved to Transcaucasus special attention was given to the placement. A.S.Griboyedov wrote: “… from all regions occupied by the Russian army, Tabriz, Khoy, Salmas, Maraga all the Armenians should be moved to Nakhichevan, Yerevan and Garabagh provinces….” Griboyedov’s this recommendation was executed properly. N.Shavrov wrote: “The Armenians were accommodated in the best lands of Yelizavetpol and Erivan provinces where the Armenian population was in small number….the mountainous part of province Yelizavetpol (Nagorno-Garabagh) and coasts of Goycha Lake was settled by the Armenians.”
Thus, the ethnic composition of the areas mentioned began to change with the resettlement of the Armenians here. According to the data of 1823, from total 20 thousand families of Garabagh region, a total of 1, 5 thousand were Armenian families. After resettlement the ethnic composition of the population has changed dramatically. In 1832 64.8% of the population of Nagorno-Garabagh was Azerbaijanis and 34.8% was the Armenians. This policy was purposefully continued to implement. In 80-es of XIX century in the national composition of the population of Shusha region 41,5% was Azerbaijanis and 58,2% Armenians. According to the 1897 population census in Russia these figures were 45 and 53%, and in 1917 40.2 and 52.3% and the massacres committed by Republic of Armenia in 1918-1920 had covered Garabagh, too. While establishing Nagorno-Garabagh Autonomous Republic in 1923, the historical injustice was done, upland and lowland parts of Garabagh were artificially separated from each other, and favorable conditions for the consolidation of the Armenian population were created, the demographic position of Azerbaijanis was severely blown. According to census held in 1926, 1959, 1970, 1979, the Azerbaijani and Armenian population of Nagorno-Garabagh was 10.1 and 89.1%, 13.8 and 84.4%, 18.1 and 80.5%, 23,0 and 75.9% respectively. Armenians of Nagorno-Garabagh marked the 150th anniversary of their resettlement here in 1978, and a special monument was erected in Maragashen-Leninavan village of Mardakert – Agdara region.
Resettlement of Armenians was connected with political interests both Russia and Armenia. Thousands of Armenians became the deliberate victim of a mischief-making policy of both these states and. Armenians being very sly in matters related to economic interests could not take lessons from the bitter results of this political tricks, and eagerly and brutally fulfilled the role of betrayal and conspiracy defined by Russian ad Armenian leaders for them and every time as a regular result of these deeds they faced national defeat and tragedy.
Garabagh during Republic of Azerbaijan
Releasing from the thralldom of the Russian Empire, which lasted for approximately 120 years, the Azerbaijani people established a new independent state in the Northern Azerbaijan. The Declaration of Independence of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic stated that the lands of Northern Azerbaijan, once occupied by Russia in accordance with the Gulistan (1813) and Turkmenchay (1828) agreements are the legal heritage of Azerbaijani people. The first article of the declaration read: “Beginning from this day the people of Azerbaijan will have their sovereign rights. Azerbaijan that consists of Eastern and Southern Transcaucasia is a legal independent state”.
The Azerbaijan Democratic Republic tried to spread its power on the entire historical area of Karabakh. At that time the newly established Republic of Armenia laid its groundless claims to Karabakh, but the government of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic opposed these claims. During the talks with the Foreign Minister of the Ottoman state in Istanbul, November 18th 1918, A.M.Topchubashov (1862-1934), the chair of the Parliament of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic said: “The Karabakh issue raised by Armenians does not concern only 5 or 10 villages, it covers all four districts: Shusha, Djavanshir, Djebrail and Zangezur. This territory belongs to only one nation and even though the number of Moslems and Armenians is not equal, there is no reason to talk in terms of domination of Armenians, because they are not native residents of these areas. These are those moving to the region from Turkey after the war with Russia…Finally, Armenians do not live separately in Karabakh itself, they form mixed settlements with Azerbaijanis. Nevertheless, we stand for the peaceful settlement of the problem”.
Armenians continued previously committed acts of genocide for the occupation of Karabakh in the period of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic as well. Taking into account the established situation, the government of Azerbaijan created a Karabakh governorship-general dealing with the provinces of Shusha, Djavanshir, Djebrail and Zangezur in January, 1919 and appointed Kh.Sultanov the governor-general of Karabakh. S.Tigranian, the Foreign Minister of Republic of (Ararat) Armenia expressed his discontent with the establishment of the governorship-general, yet the response of Azerbaijani government considered the protest to be baseless and stated that these areas are the integral part of the Azerbaijan Republic. Karabakh governorship-general had to carry out its activity in conditions of the struggle against Armenia’s claims and the tense relations first with the British and then with Americans. However, Armenians did not give a chance to establish peace in the region of Karabakh governorship-general.
In late 1919-the spring of 1920 the armed brigands of Armenian dashnaks attacked the civil inhabitants of Zangezur and committed mass bloodshed.
Armenians were also active in Djavanshir district. Their attacks to the foothill villages of Djavanshir became habitual. In spring-summer of 1918 Armenian brigands committed numerous acts of violence against the Muslim residents of plain regions of Djavanshir.
Another district of Karabakh – Jabrail was also subject to Armenians’ armed attacks. They intensified their attacks on Jabrail in December of 1918, while in early 1919 the aggression acquired more destructive nature.
The barbarism of Armenians acquired a more violent form in Shusha, the political center of Shusha province and Karabakh.
During Azerbaijan Democratic republic the meanest armed revolt of Armenians tool place during the traditional festivity of Azeri people Novruz in Shusha on March 22, 1920. This separatist revolt was arranged by Bolsheviks, preparing to occupy Azerbaijan. Despite the suppression of separatist revolts in a number of regions they managed to invade the tower of Askeran. As a result of military-political measures Azerbaijan Democratic Republic restored the sovereign rights of Karabakh. However, the separatist revolts and genocides committed by Armenians, betraying the country they resided in, on the eve of April, 1920’s occupation, stroke a hard blow to the defense of northern borders of the country and intensified the overthrow of the independent Azeri state-the Azerbaijan Independent Republic.