No: 102, 19 May 2020, Press Release Regarding The Various Activities And Statements Made On 19 May 2020 In Greece

Republic Of Turkey Ministry Of Foreign Affairs 19.05.2020

The date of 19 May 1919 when the first step of our National War of Liberation was taken is a blessed day not only for our Nation, but for all the oppressed nations who fought against imperialism.

On such a date, baseless and nonsensical statements made by the Parliament of Greece and Greek authorities under the pretext of the anniversary of 19 May 1919 can neither conciliate with historical facts nor with the values of the 21st century.

Following the ending of the First World War in 1918, Greek army’s invasion of Izmir on 15 May 1919 was added on the occupation of Istanbul, the sole capital invaded, and this terrible occupation without any justification became a scene of atrocities which turned into a planned and ignominious invasion.

It should not be forgotten that the atrocities committed had reached to such an appalling scope in less than five months following the invasion that it seriously required the Allies’ to constitute a Commission of Inquiry.

The Greek leadership, unable to face its own history, must remember the reports of Allied Commission of Inquiry and the facts behind the clause of the Lausanne Peace Treaty pertaining to war crimes. Article 59 of the Lausanne Peace Treaty determined the acts of the Greek army which invaded Anatolia contrary to the laws of war.

Following the foundation of the Republic of Turkey, Prime Minister Venizelos’ nomination of the Great Leader Mustafa Kemal Atatürk for Nobel Peace Prize bears another testimony to irresponsible politicians’ and radical circles’ attempt to engage in a reverse reading of history today.

For Greece, which insists on remaining indifferent to our calls to solve our bilateral problems through dialogue, taking our extended hand of friendship, as in the past, is also necessary to understand our changing world.

Elif Çomoğlu Ülgen Ambassador
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