Armenian Terrorism - A Chronological List, 1973 - 1986
During a 16-year period from 1973 to 1986, various
Armenian terrorist organisations claimed responsibility for about 200
attacks on Turkish diplomatic and non-diplomatic institutions and
murdered 55 Turkish and 16 non-Turkish people and wounded hundreds of
others. Armenians also targeted their own people who refused to make
financial contribution to Armenian terrorism. Below is a chronological
list of Armenian terrorist activities from 1973 to 1986.
January 27, 1973 Santa Barbara, California
The Armenian Gourgen Yanikian, a U.S. citizen,
invites the Turkish Consul General, Mehmet Baydar, and the Consul,
Bahadir Demir to a luncheon. The unsuspecting diplomats accept the
friendly invitation. Gourgen Yanikian murders his two guests. He is
sentenced to life imprisonment.
April 4, 1973 Paris
Bombings at the Turkish Consulate General and the offices of Turkish Airlines (THY). Extensive damage.
October 26, 1973 New York
Attempted bombing of the Turkish Information Office.
The bomb is discovered in time and defused. A group calling itself the
"Yanikian Commandos" claims responsibility. They want the release of
the double murderer of Santa Barbara, Gourgen Yanikian, who insidiously
murdered two Turkish diplomats.
May 17, 1976 Frankfurt, Essen, Cologne
Consulates General in Frankfurt, Essen and Cologne are the targets of simultaneous bomb attacks.
October 4, 1979 Copenhagen
Two Danes are injured when a bomb explodes near the offices of THY. ASALA claims credit.
October 12, 1979 The Hague
Ahmet Benler, the son of Turkish Ambassador Özdemir
Benler, is assassinated by Armenian terrorists. The murderers escape.
JCAG and ASALA claim responsibility.
October 30, 1979 Milan
The offices of THY are destroyed by a bomb explosion. ASALA claims responsibility.
November 8, 1979 Rome
The Turkish Tourism Office is destroyed by a bomb. ASALA claims responsibility.
November 18, 1979 Paris
Bomb explosions destroy the offices of THY, KLM, and
Lufthansa. Two French policemen are injured. Responsibility is claimed
November 25, 1979 Madrid
Bomb explosions in front of the offices of TWA and
British Airways. ASALA, in claiming responsibility, states that the
attacks are meant as a warning to the Pope to cancel his planned visit
December 9, 1979 Rome
Two bombs explode in downtown Rome, damaging the
offices of PAN AM, British Airways and the Philippine Airways. Nine
people are injured in the terrorist attack. A "New Armenian Resistance
Movement" claims responsibility.
December 17, 1979 London
Extensive damage is caused when a bomb explodes in
front of the THY offices. A "Front for the Liberation of Armenia"
December 22, 1979 Paris
Yilmaz Holpen, the Tourism Attache at the Turkish
Embassy is assassinated while walking on the Champs Ellipses. Several
groups, including ASALA, JCAG and the "Commandos of Armenian Militants
against Genocide" claim responsibility.
December 22, 1979 Amsterdam
Heavy damage results from a bomb explosion in front of the THY offices. ASALA claims credit.
December 23, 1979 Rome
A bomb explodes in front of a World Council of
Churches Refugee Centre, being used as a transit point for Armenian
refugees from Lebanon. ASALA claims credit for the attack and warns the
Italian authorities to halt "the Armenian diaspora."
August 5, 1980 Lyon
Two terrorists storm into the Turkish Consulate
General in Lyon and open fire, killing two and injuring several other
bystanders. ASALA claims credit for the attack.
August 11, 1980 New York
An "Armenian group" hurls paint bombs at the Turkish
House across from the United Nations, home of the Turkish
Representations in New York.
September 26, 1980 Paris
Selçuk Bakkalbasi, the Press Consular at the Turkish
Embassy, is shot as he enters his home. Bakkalbasi survives but is
permanently paralysed as a result of his injuries. ASALA claims
responsibility for the attack.
October 3, 1980 Geneva
Two Armenian terrorists are injured when a bomb they
are preparing explodes in their Geneva hotel room. The two, Suzy
Mahseredjian from Canoga Park, California, and Alexander Yenikomechian,
are arrested. Their arrest leads to the formation of a new group called
"October 3," which subsequently strikes at Swiss targets.
October 3, 1980 Milan
Two Italians are injured when a bomb explodes in front of the THY offices. ASALA claims credit for the attack.
October 5, 1980 Madrid
The offices of Alitalia are rocked by a bomb
explosion which injures twelve individuals. The ASALA claims
responsibility for the attack.
October 6, 1980 Los Angeles
Two Molotov cocktails are thrown into the home of the Turkish Consul General, Kemal Arikan. He survives with injuries.
October 10, 1980 Beirut
Two bombs explode near Swiss offices in West Beirut.
A group calling itself "October 3" claims responsibility for these
bombings as well as others on the same day against Swiss offices in
October 12, 1980 New York
A bomb placed in front of the Turkish House explodes. Four passers-by are injured. JCAG assumes responsibility.
October 12, 1980 Los Angeles
A travel agency in Hollywood, owned by a Turkish-American, is destroyed. JCAG claims responsibility.
October 12, 1980 London
The Turkish Tourism and Information Bureau's offices are damaged by a bomb explosion. ASALA claims credit.
October 12, 1980 London
A Swiss shopping complex in central London is damaged by a bomb blast. Callers claim the explosion was the work of "October 3."
October 13, 1980 Paris
A Swiss tourist office is damaged by a bomb explosion. "October 3" again claims credit.
October 21, 1980 Interlaken, Switzerland
A bomb is found in a Swiss express train coming from
Paris. Luckily, it does not explode. "October 3" is believed to be
behind the action, which could have caused a catastrophe.
November 4, 1980 Geneva
The Swiss Palace of Justice in Geneva is heavily damaged by a bomb explosion. Credit is claimed by "October 3."
November 9, 1980 Strasbourg
Heavy damage results from a bomb blast at the Turkish Consulate General. The attack is claimed by ASALA.
November 10, 1980 Rome
Five people are injured in attacks on the Swissair and Swiss Tourist offices. ASALA and "October 3" claim credit.
December 5, 1980 Marseilles
A police expert defuses a time bomb left at the Swiss Consulate in Marseilles. "October 3" claims responsibility.
December 15, 1980 London
Two bombs placed in front of the French Tourism
Office in London are defused by a Scotland Yard bomb squad. "October 3"
claims the bombs are a warning to the French for assistance they have
rendered the Swiss in fighting Armenian terrorism.
April 3, 1981 Copenhagen
Cavit Demir, the Labor Attache at the Turkish
Embassy, is shot as he enters his apartment building late in the
evening and is seriously wounded. Both ASALA and JCAG claim the attack.
June 3, 1981 Los Angeles
Bombs force the cancellation of performances by a
Turkish folk-dance group. Threats of similar bombings force the group's
performances in San Francisco to be cancelled as well.
June 9, 1981 Geneva
Mehmet Savas Yergüz, Secretary in the Turkish
Consulate, is assassinated by the Armenian terrorist Mardiros
Jamgotchian. The arrest of the ASALA terrorist leads to the formation
of a new ASALA branch called the "Ninth of June Organisation," which
will be responsible for a new series of attacks.
June 11, 1981 Paris
A group of Armenian terrorists, led by one Ara
Toranian, occupies the THY offices. Initially ignored by the French
authorities, the terrorists are only evicted from the premises after
vehement protests from the Turkish Embassy.
September 24, 1981 Paris
Four Armenian terrorists occupy the Turkish Consulate
General. During their entry into the building, the Consul, Kaya Inal,
and a security guard, Cemal Özen, are seriously wounded. Terrorists
take 56 hostages. Özen dies of his injuries in the hospital. The
terrorists are ASALA members.
October 3, 1981 Geneva
The main post office and the city courthouse are hit
by bomb explosions. An ASALA member is scheduled to go on trial for
murder in the courthouse. "Ninth of June" claims credit for the
attacks, which leave one person injured.
October 25, 1981 Rome
An Armenian terrorist fires at Gökberk Ergenekon,
Second Secretary at the Turkish Embassy. Ergenekon is wounded in the
arm. ASALA claims credit in the name of the "September 24 Suicide
October 25, 1981 Paris
Fouquet's, the fashionable French restaurant, is the
target of a bomb attack. A group calling itself "September-France"
claims the attack.
October 26, 1981 Paris
The same group is behind the explosion of a booby-trapped automobile in front of "Le Drugstore."
October 27, 1981 Paris
"September-France" carries out a bomb attack at Roissy Airport.
October 27, 1981 Paris
A second bomb explodes near a busy escalator at Roissy Airport. No one is injured. "September-France" claims
October 28, 1981 Paris
The same group is responsible for a bomb attack in a movie theatre. Three people are injured.
November 3, 1981 Madrid
A bomb explodes in front of the Swissair offices,
injuring three persons. Considerable damage to nearby buildings. ASALA
November 5, 1981 Paris
A bomb explodes in the Gare de Lyon, injuring one person. The attack is claimed by the Armenian "Orly Organisation."
November 12, 1981 Beirut
Simultaneous bomb explosions occur in front of three
French offices: the French Cultural Centre, the Air France offices and
the home of the French Consul General. The "Orly Organisation" claims
responsibility. This organisation owes its name to the fact that the
French police arrested an Armenian at Orly Airport in
Paris because of forged papers. The idea now is to "bomb him free."
November 14, 1981 Paris
A bomb explosion damages an automobile near the Eiffel Tower. "Orly" claims responsibility.
November 14, 1981 Paris
"Orly" launches a grenade attack on a group of tourists disembarking from a sightseeing boat on the River Seine.
November 15, 1981 Paris
"Orly" threatens to blow up an Air France aeroplane in flight.
April 24, 1982 Dortmund, West Germany
Several Turkish-owned businesses suffer extensive
damage in bomb attacks. The "New Armenian Resistance Organisation"
May 4, 1982 Cambridge, Massachusetts
Orhan Gündüz, the Turkish Honorary Consul General in Boston is assassinated. The murderer is still at large.
May 10, 1982 Geneva
Bombs explode at two banks. The attacks are claimed by an Armenian "World Punishment Organisation."
May 18, 1982 Toronto
Four Armenians are arrested for trying to smuggle
money out of the country. The money was extorted from Armenians, a
common practice throughout the world. In the course of the
investigation, it is discovered that the terrorists firebombed the
house of an Armenian who refused to make his contribution to Armenian
May 18, 1982 Tampa, Florida
Attack at the office of Nash Karahan, the Turkish Honorary Consul General.
May 26, 1982 Los Angeles
A bomb damages the office of Swiss Banking Corporation. The suspects: four Armenians accused of involvement in ASALA.
May 30, 1982 Los Angeles
Three members of ASALA are arrested when planting a bomb in the Air Canada cargo-office.
June 7, 1982 Lisbon
The Administrative Attache at the Turkish Embassy,
Erkut Akbay, and his wife, Nadide Akbay, are assassinated in front of
their home. JCAG claims responsibility.
July 1, 1982 Rotterdam
Kemalettin Demirer, the Turkish Consul General in
Rotterdam, is shot down by four Armenian terrorists. An "Armenian Red
Army" claims responsibility.
July 21, 1982 Paris
Sixteen injured in a bomb explosion near a cafe in
the Place Saint-Severin. Credit is claimed by the Orly Organisation.
"Orly" complains that the French do not treat the arrested Armenian
terrorists as "political prisoners," but rather as ordinary criminals.
July 26, 1982 Paris
"Orly" is responsible for injuring two women in an explosion in Paris' "Pub Saint-Germain."
August 2, 1982 Paris
Pierre Gulumian, an Armenian terrorist, is killed when a bomb he is making explodes in his face.
August 7, 1982 Ankara, Esenboga Airport
Two Armenian terrorists open fire in a crowded
passenger waiting room. One of the terrorists takes more than twenty
hostages while the second is apprehended by the police. Nine people are
dead and eighty-two injured; some seriously. The surviving terrorist,
Levon Ekmekjian is arrested and sentenced.
August 8, 1982 Paris
A bomb is defused in time. "Orly" regrets the discovery.
August 12, 1982 Paris
Terrorists open fire on a policeman assigned to
protect the offices of the Turkish Tourism Attache. Luckily, he escapes
August 27, 1982 Ottawa
Colonel Atilla Altikat, the Military Attache at the Turkish Embassy, is assassinated in his car. JCAG claims responsibility.
September 9, 1982 Burgaz, Bulgaria
Bora Süelkan, the Administrative Attache at the
Turkish Consulate General in Burgaz, is assassinated in front of his
home. The assassin leaves a message "We shot dead the Turkish diplomat:
Combat Units of Justice Against the Armenian Genocide." An anonymous
caller claims that the assassination is the work of a branch of the
October 26, 1982 Los Angeles
Five Armenian terrorists are charged with conspiring
to blow up the offices of the Honorary Turkish Consul General in
Philadelphia. All belong to the JCAG.
December 8, 1982 Athens
Two Armenians on a motorbike throw a bomb at the
offices of the Saudi Arabian Airlines. The bomb hits a power pylon,
explodes and kills one of the terrorists. His accomplice, an Armenian
from Iran named Vahe Kontaverdian is arrested. It is later revealed
that ASALA ordered the attack because Saudi Arabia maintains friendly
relations with Turkey.
January 22, 1983 Paris
Two terrorists attack the offices of THY with hand grenades. No one is injured. ASALA claims credit.
January 22, 1983 Paris
French police defuse a powerful explosive device near the THY counter at Orly airport.
February 2, 1983 Brussels
The offices of THY are bombed. The "New Armenian Resistance Organisation" claims responsibility.
February 28, 1983 Luxembourg
A bomb placed in front of Turkey's diplomatic mission
is defused. The Armenian Reporter in New York reports that the "New
Armenian Resistance Organisation" is responsible.
February 28, 1983 Paris
A bomb explodes at the Marmara Travel Agency. Killed
in the explosion is Renée Morin, a French secretary. Four other
Frenchmen are wounded. A few minutes after the attack, ASALA claims
March 9, 1983 Belgrade
Galip Balkar, the Turkish Ambassador to Yugoslavia is
assassinated in central Belgrade. His chauffeur, Necati Kayar is shot
in the stomach. As the two assailants flee from the scene, they are
bravely pursued by Yugoslav citizens. One of the terrorists shoots and
wounds a Yugoslav Colonel, and is in turn apprehended by a policeman.
The second terrorist opens fire on civilians who are chasing him,
killing a young student and wounding a young girl. The two terrorists,
Kirkor Levonian and Raffi Elbekian, are tried and sentenced.
March 31, 1983 Frankfurt
An anonymous caller threatened to bomb the offices and kill the staff of Tercüman newspaper, a Turkish daily.
June 16, 1983 Istanbul
Armenian terrorists carry out an attack with hand
grenades and automatic weapons inside the covered bazaar in Istanbul.
Two dead, twenty-one wounded. ASALA claims responsibility.
July 8, 1983 Paris
Armenian terrorists attack the offices of the British Council, protesting against the trials of Armenians in London.
July 14, 1983 Brussels
Armenian terrorists murder Dursun Aksoy, the
Administrative Attache at the Turkish Embassy. ASALA, ARA and JCAG
July 15, 1983 Paris
A bomb explodes in front of the THY counter at Orly airport. Eight dead, more than sixty injured. A 29 years old
Syrian-Armenian named Varadjian Garbidjian confesses to having planted the bomb. He admits that the bomb
was intended to have exploded once the plane was airborne.
July 15, 1983 London
A bomb, similar to the one that exploded at Orly, is defused in time. ASALA claims responsibility for both attacks.
July 18, 1983 Lyon
A bomb threat is made by ASALA against the Lyon railroad station.
July 20, 1983 Lyon
Panicky evacuation of Lyon's Gare de Perrache following a bomb threat from ASALA.
July 22, 1983 Teheran
"Orly" carries out bomb attacks on the French Embassy and Air France.
July 27, 1983 Lisbon
Five Armenian terrorists attempt to storm the Turkish
Embassy in Lisbon. Failing to gain access to the chancery, they occupy
the residence, taking the Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM) and his family
hostage. When explosives being planted by the terrorists go off, Cahide
Mihçioglu, wife of the DCM and four of the terrorists are blown to
pieces. The DCM, Yurtsev Mihçioglu, and his son Atasay are injured. The
fifth terrorist is killed in the initial assault by Turkish security
forces. One Portuguese policeman is also killed and another wounded.
The ARA claims responsibility.
July 28, 1983 Lyon
Another bomb threat on Lyon-Perrache railroad station. ASALA claims responsibility.
July 31, 1983 Lyon and Rennes
Bomb threats from Armenian terrorists force the emergency landing of two domestic French flights carrying 424 passengers.
August 10, 1983 Teheran
A bomb explodes in an automobile at the French Embassy. ASALA claims credit for the attack.
August 25, 1983 Bonn
A whole series of bomb attacks against offices of the
French Consulate General claim two lives and leave twenty-three
injured. ASALA claims responsibility.
October 1, 1983 Marseilles
A bomb blast destroys the U.S., Soviet and Algerian
pavilions at an international trade fair in Marseilles. One person is
killed and twenty-six injured. ASALA and "Orly" claim credit.
February 8, 1984 Paris
Bomb threat on an Air France flight to New York.
March 29, 1984 Los Angeles
ASALA sends a written threat, saying they will assassinate Turkish athletes who take part in the Olympics.
April 8, 1984 Beirut
ASALA issues a communique warning that all flights to Turkey will be considered military targets.
April 26, 1984 Ankara
The Turkish Prime Minister, Turgut Özal, receives a
threat warning him that if he goes ahead with a planned visit to
Teheran, ASALA will schedule a major terrorist operation against his
June 20, 1984 Vienna
A bomb explodes in a car belonging to Erdogan Özen,
Assistant Labor and Social Affairs Consular at the Turkish Embassy in
Vienna. Özen is killed and five others seriously wounded, including a
policeman. ARA terrorists claim credit for the crime.
June 25, 1984 Los Angeles
A news agency office in France receives a letter
threatening to attack all governments, organisations and companies that
assist, in any way whatsoever, Turkey's team at the Los Angeles
August 13, 1984 Lyon
A bomb explodes in a Lyon train station causing minor damage. ASALA claims credit.
September 1984 Teheran
Several Turkish owned firms in Iran come under attack
after receiving warning letters informing them that they are to be
targeted. The first victim is the Sezai Türkes Company. A Turkish
employee is injured while fighting the fire caused by the explosion. A
chain of smaller scale acts of intimidation follows.
September 1, 1984 Teheran
Iranian authorities expose a plot to assassinate Ismet Birsel, the Turkish Ambassador to Teheran.
September 3, 1984 Istanbul
Two Armenian terrorists die as one of their bombs goes off too soon. The ARA claims credit.
November 19, 1984 Vienna
Evner Ergun, Deputy Director of the Centre for Social
Development and Humanitarian Affairs of the United Nations, Vienna is
assassinated while driving to work. The assassins leave a flag with the
initials "ARA" on his body.
December 1984 Brussels
Authorities are able to thwart a bombing attempt at the residence of Selçuk Incesu, Turkish Consul General.
December 29, 1984 Beirut
Two French buildings in East Beirut are bombed. ASALA claims credit.
December 29, 1984 Paris
Following an ASALA threat to blow up an Air France plane, police increase security at the Charles de Gaulle Airport.
January 3, 1985 Beirut
The offices of Agence France Presse are extensively damaged when a bomb explodes.
March 3, 1985 Paris
An anonymous caller to Agence France Presse threatens
to attack French interests throughout the world upon the indictment of
the three terrorists who participated in the Orly attack.
March 12, 1985 Ottawa
Three heavily armed terrorists storm the Turkish
Embassy, killing a Canadian security guard in the process. After
blowing up the front door, the gunmen enter the building. Ambassador
Coskun Kirca manages to escape but suffers extensive injuries. The wife
and daughter of the Ambassador, who were taken hostage, are later
released, and the terrorists surrender. ARA claims responsibility.
March 26, 1985 Toronto
A threat to blow up the city of Toronto's transit
system leads to chaos during the rush hour. An "Armenian Secret Army
for the Liberation of Our Homeland" claims responsibility for the
November 1985 Brussels
A special anti-terrorist security squad of the
Belgian police exposes and arrests three Armenian terrorists with
Portuguese passports. They were planning an attack on Turkish officers
at NATO headquarters.
November 28, 1985 Paris
French police arrest the leader of the terrorist
organisation the "Armenian Secret Army for the Liberation of
Armenia-Revolutionary Movement" (ASALA-RM) Mr. Monte Melkonian, a U.S.
citizen. In Melkonian's apartment, police confiscate weapons, explosive
devices, arrival and departure information on Turkish ships scheduled
to visit France and a picture of Turkey's Ambassador to France, Adnan
December 1985 Paris
Forty-one shoppers in two of Paris' leading
department stores (Gallerie Lafayette and Printemps) are injured
(twelve seriously) when nearly simultaneous bomb explosions rip through
the stores. In the ensuing panic, some 10,000 Christmas shoppers flee
into the street. The Armenian Reporter, published in New York, reports
in its December 12th issue that French law enforcement authorities are
concentrating on ASALA as the most
likely perpetrator. ASALA later takes credit for the two bombings.
November 23, 1986 Melbourne
At 2:15 a.m. a bomb explodes in front of the Turkish
Consulate General. One dead -presumedly the perpetrator- and one