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280                   JOUENEYS IN KURDISTAN    LETTER xxvm

driven off in spite of the guards, who dare not fire. I
was awakened "by the disturbance, and as it was a light
night I saw that the Kurds who attacked the sheepfold
were armed with modern guns. The reis of that village
and this man's brother have both been shot by the

Testimony concurred in stating that the insecurity of
life and property has enormously increased this summer,
especially since the reduction of the Diza garrison; that
" things have grown very much worse since the Erzerum
troubles;" that the Kurds have been more audacious in
their demands and more reckless of human life; and that
of late they have threatened the Christians as such, saying
that the Government would approve of " their getting rid
of them." Very little of any value, the people said, was
left to them, and the extreme bareness of their dwellings,
and the emptiness of their stables and sheepfolds, while
surrounded with possibilities of pastoral and agricultural
wealth, tend to sustain their statements. " The men of
Government," they all said, " are in partnership with the
Kurds, and receive of their gains. This is our curse."

Many women and girls, especially at Charviva andVasi-
vawa, have been maltreated by the Kurds. A fortnight

ago a girl, ten years old, going out from-------, to carry

bread to the reapers, was abducted. It became known

that two girls in-------were to be carried off, and they

were hidden at first in a hole near-------. Their hiding-
place last week was known only to their father, who
carried them food and water every second night. He
came to me in the dark secretly, and asked me to bring
them up here, where they might find a temporary asylum.
Daily and nightly during the week of my visit Gawar
was harried by the Kurds, who in two instances burned
what they could not carry away, the glare of the blazing
sheaves lighting up the plain.