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Torture of Armenians by Turks: L'Observateur Paris 1891

It has been stated that the prisons are crowded by the unfortunate victims of the cruelty of the government, on the ground of (often of groundless) suspicion. The condition of these unfortunates and the atrocities of the Turkish officers are found briefly described in the following extract from a letter written to LObservateur, of Paris, from Constantinople, dated June 26th, 1891.*
 
"I have already written you, that in consequence of the late disturbances at Constantinople most of the Armenian prisoners have been banished, in small groups, to various distant places, in order not to attract the attention of the public. Is it possible to ever pen the tortures that these unfortunates are suffering in Turkish prisons? The penal system in Turkey is still in its primitive state, and has undergone no improvement since the time of Sultan Mehmed II. Many prisoners have not been able to stand the tortures inflicted upon them, and the death of one of them, Vartan Calousdian (a young man twenty-six years of age), is a new proof of their atrocities.
"The parents of this young man, hearing of his death in the prison, during the last week, succeeded in securing, through the almighty 'backshish,' the remains of their beloved in order to inter him in their family grave. While the attendants of the church at Galata were washing the body according to the custom of the Armenian Church, they could not withold their tears, and they were awe-stricken at the sight of numerous wounds which marked the body. The poor young man had 
many of his ribs broken, the palms of his hands and the bottom of his feet were burned, and his breast and back striped with long burns. * * *"
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