The photo depicts a line of Armenian orphans holding their daily ration of bread. The photo was taken by Leopold Kashchik, the Polish employee of Danish missionary Karen Jeppe. Kashchik also photographed the Armenian refugee camp in Aleppo on the instructions of Jeppe.
Karen Jeppe attached such photos to the letters which she sent to various humanitarian and political organizations in hopes of receiving material assistance for Armenian refugees in Syria and other regions of the Middle East. Jeppe maintained correspondence with various divisions of the League of Nations — the assembly, the council, the high secretary, the commissions on the issues of Armenian refugees, etc.
In her letters, she addressed the plight of Armenian refugees and their camps, emphasizing the importance of providing them with material, moral, and even political support. The organization “Danish Friends of Armenians” responded to the appeals of Jeppe. Jeppe herself was a member of this organization.
Putting his life in danger, Bishop Mesrop arrived from Erivan to beg the Germans for help. According to his words, almost half a million Armenians would die of starvation unless they were allowed to return to Sardarabad-Igdir and Davalu regions to gather the ripe harvest.
“The description of the bishop was amazing. The intention of the Turks to make the entire Armenian nation go hungry is obvious. Essad [Pasha] refused my request to allow the Armenian refugees and the Armenian National Council to return to their homeland for minor reasons. The strong pressure of the central powers on the Turks is required by humanity and politics.”
The telegram of the commander of the German Military Mission in the Caucasus General von Kressenstein to the German Foreign Ministry. Tiflis, July 10, 1918.
Photo source: Collection of the Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute. From the catalog “100 photo stories about the Armenian Genocide.”