After the war against Persia ended, Nicholas I launched military operations against the Ottoman Empire in April 1828. Armenians not only provided great financial assistance to the Russian army but also formed volunteer regiments and actively participated in combat.
In the summer of 1828, the Russian army captured Kars, Akhalkalaki, Akhaltsikhe, Ardahan, and Bayazet. On June 27, 1829, military units under the command of General Paskevich entered Karin. A month later, on July 17, 1829, General Bursov approached Baberd (Bayburd). The Armenian cavalry was especially distinguished in the battles for the city.
The Armenians of Baberd met the Russian military with traditional bread and salt, but literally minutes later, something unexpected happened. The Armenian cavalry regiment was disarmed. Then, plunder of the Armenian quarter began, accompanied by brutal violence against civilians. The houses and shops of the Armenians were looted and destroyed.
As people of Baberd wrote to Father Karapet: “Յորժամ ռուսական տերութիւն եկաւ, մեզ ցիրուցան էրաւ։ Ամէն մեկս գացինք աստին անդին…” This roughly translates to: “When the Russian Empire arrived, it scattered us. Everybody went here and there” (from the archives of Matenadaran).
And on March 2, 2020, a bust of Nicholas I was installed on the territory of the Russian military base in Gyumri.
Read Also: Mass Protests Of Armenians Against Russian Despotism – Arrival Of Nicholas I In Armenia, 1837, Suppression Of The Armenian Uprising In New Bayazet With Military Force With The Consent Of Nicholas I – 1838, Nicholas I At The Roots Of Russia’s Colonial Policy In Armenia