Humanitarian crisis at the Ottoman–Russian border
Russian imperial responses to Armenian refugees of war and genocide, 1914–15
in Aid to Armenia
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As many as 120,000 to 150,000 Armenians – displaced as a result of the First World War on the Caucasus front and the genocide perpetrated by the Ottoman government against its own Armenian subjects – had crossed the border into Russian imperial territories in the Caucasus in summer and autumn 1915. To confront this emergency situation, imperial Russian authorities as well as non-governmental organisations engaged in the provision of relief to displaced Armenians. By exploring imperial Russia’s response to the refugee crisis on the Caucasus front of the First World War, this chapter elucidates the complexity of humanitarianism at the beginning of the twentieth century. Whereas existing research on humanitarian responses to the Armenian Genocide has focused on the work of Western European actors among Ottoman-Armenian refugees in the Middle East, this chapter shifts the geographical focus to include the Ottoman–Russian borderlands. Drawing upon hitherto unused primary sources from Armenian, Georgian and Russian archives, it focuses particularly on the emergence of refugee relief structures and practices on the Caucasus front during the first year of the war.

Aid to Armenia

Humanitarianism and intervention from the 1890s to the present

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