There are at present here from 70,000 to 80,000 individuals without bread, and there is no one to keep them down in case of disorderly conduct. I wish it were possible that his Highness the Grand Vizier could come here and witness the spectacle which this ill-fated town and the encampments present....... In a few days hence this number will be doubled. How is it expected that such a mass of men should be kept in order? How is it to be fed and provided for? This immigration thus left to itself is an actual calamity..... if we had here an adequate supply of flour the number of ovens would be insufficient; we need biscuits. There are individuals who die from starvation, and the number of those who have been four days without receiving their rations is very large.
Dr Barrozzi, an Italian medical doctor, was asked by the Board of Health of the Ottoman Empire to report on the health and welfare of the Circassian immigrants currently in Trebizond and Samsoun. Extract from his report on the immigrants in Samsun, May 20, 1864
I was anxious – knowing how strong an impression Dr. Barozzi’s official report from Samsoun had produced throughout England – to forward the one he presented, on his return from his sanitary mission, to the Board of Health; convinced as I am that the facts he has brought to light are such as not only to keep up, but increase tenfold, the interest displayed in favour of the Circassian exiles. I deeply regret, however… that the author....when enumerating the various causes which engendered the diseases which have occasioned and still continue to occasion the most awful mortality, among the Circassians, has not said one word concerning the principal among these causes – i.e., the barbarous treatment these exiles met with on the part of the Russian military authorities....The question to be dealt with at present, is whether the measures adopted by the Russian Generals to accomplish the ‘pacification’ of the conquered provinces, were not calculated to occasion the diseases which have already destroyed upwards of two hundred thousand of their inhabitants, and continue yet to decimate the ranks of the survivors, after finding a refuge in Turkey?
Extract from letter from T. Milligen, which was included as evidence in the Journal of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the British Houses of Parliament, 3. August, 1864.