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Message from the President of the World Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE), Mr. Stefanos P. Tamvakis on the Memorial Day for the Genocide of Greeks in Pontus Asia Minor (1916 – 1923)

For another year, with feelings of respect and responsibility, Greeks worldwide honor the victims of the Pontus Greeks Genocide; one of the first genocides in modern history, with over 353.000 losses and disastrous consequences for the ones who survived.

This day, established on February 1994 through a unanimous resolution of the Hellenic Parliament as a Day of Memory for the Genocide of Greeks in Asia Minor Pontus, during the 1916 – 1923 period, forms another opportunity to manifest that Hellenism possesses a historical memory.

Hellenes around the world, standing on the forefront of struggles for the international recognition of the abominable genocide, call for a moral vindication of the victims, promoting the issue in the countries they reside. The World Council of Hellenes Abroad, since its establishment, consistently supports the efforts of organized Pontian Hellenism being made towards this end. This is the only safe way to prevent the reoccurrence of similar tragic events.

And for those who question our intentions, we stress that we are not overtaken by feelings of hatred, which is nonetheless inconsistent with the values of our ancient culture. We ask nothing more or less than Turkey coming to terms with history and issuing an apology, so as to pave the way for a peaceful coexistence between the two nations.

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