2.5 Million Islamized Armenians Estimated in Turkey

A scene from the Hrant Dink Foundation's conference on 'Islamized Armenians' at the Istanbul Bosphorus University. Nov. 3, 2013.

ISTANBUL (Horizon Weekly)—A rediscovery of national identity among Turkey’s millions of “hidden Armenians” is rattling national taboos in Turkey. Specialists studying the matter have related the trend to various political and cultural changes that are enabling Turkey’s Islamized Armenians to return to their roots.

The director of the Study Center for Western Armenian Issues, Haykazun Alvrtsyan, says that the movement started long ago, and it was greatly influenced by the Kurdish armed rebellion, the collapse of the Soviet Union, and Turkey’s campaign to join the European Union.

The 88th article of the first Turkish constitution adopted in 1924 said that all Turkish residents, regardless of their religious and national belonging are considered Turkish. In order to improve its chances for EU membership, Turkey had to revise some of the points in its constitution. However, even after some changes in the country’s constitution the terms Turkish citizen and Turkish national succeed each other – each Turkish citizen is considered a Turk.

Alvrtsyan says that only upon the Treaty of Lausanne Armenian, Greek and Assyrian communities were recognized as religious, not ethnic. A huge amount of other ethnicities – 50 ethno-religious groups speaking 36 languages, were recognized as Turkish.

“Now this taboo has been broken, can you imagine what kind of a movement has been started? Armenians are no exception in this movement, but on our part the interesting thing is that Turkey today has the Armenian Question – a complicated political wrinkle. It does not have a Syrian, Greek or Jewish question, but it has an Armenian Question, which is a serious problem for Turkey, and in this context the revival of Armenians unlike other nations is highly important,” Alvrtsyan said.

Addressing the question of Islam-converted Armenians, he mentioned that their number grew to 3 million, a part of whom emigrated. In Germany alone, there were 300,000 Muslim Armenians. He insisted that today in the Eastern part of Turkey, in various areas of historic Armenia there live at least 2.5 million Muslim Armenians, half of which are hiding.

“Both of the groups are converted Muslims, but (those who hide their ethnic identity), unlike the other group, secretly preserve the national traditions, ceremonies, beliefs. And they marry among themselves, which is a highly important factor. The other group gets baptized and returns to the Armenian Church. The number of these people is not much yet, because pressure and persecution against Armenians still continue. Thus, they endanger their and their children’s lives, property, their children’s future,” Alvrtsyan said. “But let me tell you that last week I baptized several Alevis and Muslim Armenians from Dersim. One of them had his private business in Dersim four years ago and now he lost it because he announced he is an Armenian and he became a member of the Armenian union in Dersim.”

Armenians in Hamashen have the Vagf union, and in Istanbul they established Hatig. Last month Armenians from Mush and Taron established the social and touristic union of Taron. According to Turkey’s State Statistical data, there are 37,000 Armenian families in 17 cities of the country – a total of about 200,000 (about 50-60,000 in Istanbul).

“Upon official data there are 3,000 Armenians in Mush now, but the locals say that there are more. In Van, again the locals say that they form 12 percent of the 350,000 population, which makes 40-42,000 Armenians. Recently, when there was an earthquake in Van, numerous sacred books, crosses, and church relics were found from under the ruins. It was surprising that Armenian icons were found from that unilaterally Kurdish and Islamic city,” he said.


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  1. Vagharshak Sevulyan said:

    Hello ,
    There is no islamized Armenians , who is making up. even hemshin are Christians , I saw one document in Rize that old woman openly mention that he prays for Jesus Christ . Wake up don’t label Armenians as muslims do not forget because of we Armenians massacred 1,5 million + Armenians . For theire spirit do not continue this nonsense , Heavan sakes . I can write more about this , but I am going to end here . Sincerely Yours, Have a wonderful day. Vagharshak Sevulyan.

  2. GB said:

    Nobody in Turkey have “Mongolian Turkic” roots. They are forcefully Islamized Armenians, Greeks, Assyrians and Kurds!

  3. Areg said:

    How many millions were victim’s of Turkish crime of the Armenian Genocide? How many many more millions
    of unborn Armenians were unborn as the result of Armenian Genocide? Do not fool yourselves of few “remaining Armenians scattered in Western Armenia.” Where are My People” we must ask ourselves and “Where are Our Lands” we must demand. Enough of this self petty emotional outbreaks! Herik E.

  4. edward demian said:

    That’s all? those must be recent converts that still remember their roots. but the overwhelming majority that convinced themselves of their Turkishness, are in reality acculturated Armenians. So, the numers of genetic Armenians must be much higher.

    • edward demian said:

      I agree Arn. Especially with the sentiment. Turkey, (this amalgamation of oppressed large and small minorities) is kept together by the iron will of the Military, Nationalist and Islamic junta. Like all dictatorial empires, or multiethnic empires, it will fall apart. Because, human nature being what it is, it cant help itself. Absolute power leads to aggression and that leads to war and that leads to disaster. As Armenians, we decry Turkish misbehavior, but secretly, we ought to revel because Turkeys recent behavior exactly mimics the destructive path I’ve described.

  5. Alex Postallian said:

    You can see how cruel,inhuman,uncivilized cowardice the jerky turks,truly are,when people afraid to expose their ethnic,religious,background,and turn jerky turk,and muslim,and the world,blinks,caught up in this deceit..No tribute to the worlds cowardice….My dear father had those scared eyes,and only spoke the swine-herd language,of the jerky turks,no Armenian…

    • hiedi said:

      *** Lets say more Armenians live in ( the stolen land artificially called Turkey ) it is profoundly sad…… eastern part of that country is Armenian land and people.. and will be joined to mainland Armenia .., it is only a matter of time…. *** LONG LIVE FREE & PROSPEROUS ARMENIA ***.

  6. edward demian said:

    Clearly, Turkey is a fictitious country built and held together by myths and lies. Turkey is too aggressive, too big and too Islamic. It needs to break up into smaller Ethnic sections. ie: Kurdish, Zaza, Alawis, Armenian , Pontian, Hemshin, etc., etc. Thats how it was before the age of empires.

  7. Zvo said:

    Mr Thomas Jones aka Oguz
    I am glad that you spend so much researching bullshit. Yes Armenian did help Russians, Do you know why ?
    Hmmm, maybee because they felt threatened in Turkey, or maybee they got slaughtered when Seljuk who never belonged to that land suddenly showed up blood thirsty.
    Or maybee because beat up impoverished Turkishmen soldiers would be back from wars and from Balkans and saw Armenian land and business owners living prosperously, Maybee thats a good opportunity to slaughter them and take over their land, home , business.
    All the organizers Envir Pasha, Djemal Pasha and Talaat (All guned down like dogs) they all said it was necessary. So they are saying we did it you are saying it never happened , you guys just concentrate and decide what you need to say.

  8. Emre said:

    This’s the old phony debate. Muslim populations of the Balkans literally wiped out by modern weapons and vermin holding them. This inspired(!) Armenians(primarily Armenian Church) to bet on the imperialist Entente and they lost as Turks strived.

  9. setrak kassabian said:

    2.5 million Islamised Armenians in Turkey
    How convenient to find them during the centenary of the genocide
    What are these Armenians doing for their brethren, are they not unhappy about the injustice of the Genocide
    Do they walk down the main streets trying to tell all Turkish citizens what happened?
    Beware compatriots unless I see action by these “Armenians” I would not believe this “red herring”

  10. GeorgeMardig said:

    This may be a Turkish planned plot to be used in the future, whenever time comes for Armenian land and reparation claims arrive.

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  13. Sandra Vartanian said:

    I enjoyed reading the Article. I felt sad too. My Grandmother Satenig left the Village of Mush with her Brother and Sister. She looked up and saw her Father hanging from a tree. A Turk shot her Mother. Her siblings starved to death in the Syrian Desert. My Grandmother Satenig ended up in a Orphanage in Lebanon. She migrated to Hamilton, Canada with her Cousin.