Victoria Parliament of Australia Raises the Genocide of the Greeks

by Stavros T. Stavrides
Historical Researcher, National Centre for Hellenic Studies and Research,
Latrobe University, Melbourne, Australia

05 May 2006

The Parliament of Victoria in Australia raised the issue of the Genocide of the Pontic Greeks. Senator Jenny Mikakos was the first to raise this issue in the Parliament ever on the occasion of 87 anniversary of the genocide and due to the relevant events that will be held in Australia in order to commemorate this fact.

J. Mikakou wished to honor the memory of the 353,000 Pontic Greeks who were eliminated between 1916 and 1923 where Turkey is today”. “Before them”, Ms Mikakou reported, “1, 5 million Armenians and 750,000 Assyrians were eliminated in various parts of Turkey”.

Senator Mikakos, who spoke about an “attempt to impose oblivion and misrepresent history, as well as hide the truth about the tragedy the Pontic Greeks sustained in historic Pontus for 87 years”, stressed that the issue of the Pontic and Armenian genocide had been raised in many Parliaments all over the world. In Australia, the former NSW Prime Minister Bob Car, Federal MP of Labour party Steve Georganas and others have raised the same issue.

She also added that the “atrocities of that period were recorded by American, German and Austrian diplomats”.

“In contrast to Germany that resumed responsibility about the Holocaust, Turkey has never apologized to the victims of the genocide”, said Ms Mikakou, adding that “Turkey must recognize the genocide, so as real reconciliation prevails and the descendants of the victims rest”.

It should be noted that between 1912-1923 more than 3.500.000 Greeks, Assyrians and Armenians have been slaughtered in Turkey in a state-organized campaign of genocide.

(Posting date 16 May 2006)

About the Author

Stavros Terry Stavridis was born in Cairo, Egypt in 1949 of Greek parents. He migrated to Australia with his parents in September 1952. Stavros has a Bachelor of Arts (B.A) in Political Science/Economic History and B.A (Hons) in European History from Deakin University and M.A in Greek/Australian History from RMIT University. His MA thesis is titled "The Greek-Turkish War 1919-23: an Australian Press Perspective."

Stavros has nearly 20 years of teaching experience, lecturing at University and TAFE (Technical and Further Education, the equivalent of Community College in the US) levels. He has presented papers at international conferences in Australia and USA and has also given public lectures both in Australia and on the West Coast of the US. Many of his articles have appeared in the Greek-American press. He currently works as a historical researcher at the National Center for Hellenic Studies and Research, Latrobe University, Bundoora, Victoria, Australia.

Stavros' research interests are the Asia Minor campaign and disaster, Middle Eastern history, the Assyrian and Armenian genocides, Greece in the Balkan Wars 1912-13 and the First World War and history in general.

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