Meeting of Circassian lords, 1839-1840. Photo: Grigory Gagarin,

18 February 2020, 11:21

Historians treat Ambassador Erkhov's words about Circassians as unscientific

The statement of Alexei Erkhov, the Russian Ambassador to Ankara, about the voluntary resettlement of Circassians to Turkey during the Caucasian War and about their criminal way of life fail to reflect the historical reality, the historians interviewed by the "Caucasian Knot" assert.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that Erkhov's statement pronounced on February 13 about Circassians' criminal way of life, and their voluntary resettlement from Northern Caucasus to Turkey as a result of the Caucasian War provoked the indignation of the Federation of Caucasian Associations of Turkey (known as KAFFED) and the Federation of Circassian Associations.

Togrul Ismail, historian and political analyst, Professor at the Turkish University of Political Science and International Relations, has treated the Ambassador's words about the outcome of the Caucasian War and the resettlement of Circassians as irrelevant to historiography.

"The conquest of the Caucasus by the Russian Empire is a very complex topic; there was resistance to colonialism; and here Mr Erkhov simplifies the story by saying that Caucasians attacked the local Russian population. It is known that there had never been Russians in the Caucasus. Talking about the peaceful resettlement of the population of the Caucasus to fraternal Turkey is nonsense," Professor Ismail told the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent.

Speaking about Circassians and Northern Caucasus, "the Ambassador should not forget that they had lived in the territory of their historical homeland and undertook no raids and conquest campaigns outside the Caucasus," Hadji Murad Donogo, Doctor of History and editor of the "Akhulgo" journal, told the "Caucasian Knot".

"The Ambassador's statement says that persuasions did not help; and the Russian army came into action. And where did it come from to these lands, what did it do in the Caucasus, why did it go to the mountains, destroying villages, burning down forests and gardens? Everyone who sticks to this viewpoint should admit that it was a colonial war with the aim to establish their own rules in Northern Caucasus," Mr Donogo has concluded.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on February 18, 2020 at 06:03 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Magomed Tuayev; Source: CK correspondent

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