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Hovhannes Kajaznuni

Hovhannes Kajaznuni

Hovhannes Kajaznuni (Kachaznuni) (Akhaltsikhe 1868 – ?Yerevan 1938) His family originated from Erzerum. Attended Russian and German universities, studying architecture and mining engineering. Settled in Baku; joined the Dashnak party. Published a work on poets of eastern Armenia (1902). Visited Erzerum after Ottoman constitution (1908). Criticised establishment of volunteer units (1914). After 1917, he was a member of the Armenian National Council; in November one of nine Dashnaks chosen to represent the party in the new Constitution Assembly, Petrograd. Chief spokesman for Dashnaktsutiun in the Transcaucasian Seim (February–May 1918). A member of the Transcaucasian delegation at the Trebizond conference (March). Minister of welfare in Chkhenkeli’s government (Transcaucasian). After Armenia’s independence, he was a member of the delegation that signed the treaty of Batum (4 June 1918). Appointed first prime minister of Armenia, arriving in Yerevan on 17 July. Criticised by hard-line Dashnaks for his conciliatory policies. Travelled to Europe and America in April–May 1919 (together with a Populist minister) to obtain funds and aid. Relinquished premiership of Khatisian, August 1919. Approached to take premiership again in November 1920; accepted, but unable to form a government. Arrested after Sovietisation; released by February revolt. Left Armenia for Europe in 1921. Published manifesto at a Dashnak convention, Bucarest, March 1923, entitled Dashnaktsutiun has Nothing More to Do, in which he argued that Dashnaktsutiun should terminate its existence as a party and all Armenians should support Soviet Armenia. Repatriated to Soviet Armenia and worked there; killed during Stalin/Beria purges.

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