In his message for the Pontian Genocide, Deputy Foreign Minister Kostas Vlasis stressed that safeguarding the historical memory was a moral, historical and national duty. He also pointed out that “the establishment of historical truth is the only thing that guarantees the fight against all forms of nationalism and intolerance in a world that must be based on the values of peace, freedom and justice.” He made clear that it was a collective duty and a common cause while stating that the struggle for the international recognition of the Pontian Genocide went on.
In this context, Vlasis emphasized that the Greek State asked Turkey to assume – even now – its responsibilities by accepting its past.
The deputy minister then noted the importance of May 19 saying that “the Greek community all over the world pays tribute to the victims of the Pontian Genocide, to the hundreds of thousands of our compatriots who lost their lives and were forcibly expelled from their homes as a part of a heinous crime against humanity.” He further emphasized that the thriving communities of Greeks in the Pontus region and the wider Asia Minor, with a presence and tradition that goes back centuries, held a special place in the long historical course of Hellenism, and noted that their brutal uprooting caused a deep trauma in the collective consciousness of Greek nation, cutting off one of the most vivid, creative and proud parts of Ecumenical Hellenism from its primordial roots.
“Despite this unspeakable catastrophe,” he added, “the Pontians never quit. True fighters, with patience and perseverance, settled in their new homelands, which they enriched with their knowledge, ideas, linguistic and cultural wealth. With their patriotism and principles, they managed to keep the Pontus heritage all over the world alive, giving prominence to the inexhaustible power within the Greek soul.”
19.5.2020 – Σήμερα είναι Ημέρα Μνήμης για τη Γενοκτονία των Ελλήνων του Πόντου.
Κρατάμε ζωντανή την ιστορική μας συνείδηση και κάνουμε κάθε προσπάθεια να αναγνωριστεί διεθνώς η Γενοκτονία του Ποντιακού Ελληνισμού. pic.twitter.com/iFPR3SKUSb
— Kostas Vlasis (@KostasVlasis) May 19, 2020