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Peace at home, peace in the world

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NO:80 - 23 May 2007, Press Statement Regarding the Events Organized in the Context of the So-Called Pontian - Greek Genocide (Unofficial Translation)

 

The Parliament of Greece declared May 19 as the so-called ‘Pontian Greek Genocide Commemoration Day’ through a bill adopted on 24 February 1994. The said bill which defames our country and Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of our Republic, constitutes a basis for hostile campaigns of those circles, who have no sense of history.

The so-called ‘genocide’ allegations which have gained momentum with the active support extended by the Pontian Associations in Greece and elsewhere as well as by certain Greek politicians, do not have any historical or scientific basis. They are merely distortion of the historical facts.

We expect Greece to take necessary measures in order to prevent those hostile activities that endanger the spirit of good-neighborly relations and threaten the gains of the dialogue and cooperation process, launched between Turkey and Greece in 1999.

Moreover, we strongly condemn the participation of government members, political party representatives and local officials in the events held in Thessaloniki and Athens on 19-20 May 2007, as well as their unacceptable allegations against our country. Continuation of this attitude will damage the climate of friendship and confidence between Turkish and Greek peoples and undermine the basis of cooperation between the two countries.

On this occasion, we would like to recall the cruelty and atrocities carried out by Greece in Anatolia during our War of Independence. In this vein, Article 59 of the Lausanne Peace Treaty which stipulates that ‘Greece recognizes her obligation to make reparation for the damage caused in Anatolia by the acts of the Greek army or administration which were contrary to the laws of war’ should be recalled.