Mr. Alston to Mr. Balfour―(Received January 6.)
(Telegraphic.) Vladivostock, January 5, 1919.
FOLLOWING from British consul, Ekaterinburg, of 3rd January : ―
"Have just returned from Perm after taken by Siberian Army under General Peplief. Tremendous booty was captured, including 4,000 waggons, 260 locomotives, 70 per cent. of which working condition ; 30,000 prisoners, 50 guns, 10 armoured cars, great number automobiles, and other material not yet counted. Part of 4,000 waggons captured full every conceivable domestic material stolen from shops and inhabitants, loaded for evacuation by Bolsheviks. Bridge across Kama intact. From interviews, local authorities and inhabitants, would appear that Bolsheviks subjected inhabitants to horrible repressions and cruelties, especially after attempt Lenin's life. Have examined witnesses who found bodies of their relatives killed by bayonet wounds, faces wearing marks boot nails ; no bullet marks found on these bodies. Instruments used for torturing victims also found. No data available regarding number people killed ; number educated people enquiring for missing male relatives stated by authorities as being very great. Educated population during last three months have been practically starving, food allowances only being given to people employed by Bolsheviks. Food supply of Bolsheviks, however, not great, one pound bad bread being allowed daily for workmen. Taking of Perm has great economic significance."