Ankara, Turkey – The United Nations defines genocide as any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group: killing members of the group; causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; or forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.
According to the International Criminal Court, crimes against humanity are defined as any of the following acts committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack knowingly directed against any civilian population: murder; extermination; enslavement; deportation or forcible transfer of population; imprisonment; torture; rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy, enforced sterilization, or any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity; persecution against an identifiable group on political, racial, national, ethnic, cultural, religious or gender grounds; enforced disappearance of persons; the crime of apartheid; or other inhumane acts of a similar character intentionally causing great suffering or serious bodily or mental injury.
The Dutch Supreme Court upheld a lower court’s ruling that the Netherlands is partially liable in the deaths of some 350 Muslim men who were murdered by Bosnian Serb forces during the 1995 Srebrenica massacre.
The Netherlands’ highest court ruled that Dutch United Nations peacekeepers evacuated the men from their military base near Srebrenica on July 13, 1995, despite knowing that they “were in serious jeopardy of being abused and murdered” by Bosnian Serb forces.
Presiding Judge Kees Streefkerk said “the state did act wrongfully” and told relatives of the dead they can now claim compensation from the Dutch government.
In 1995 book, “Death and Exile: The Ethnic Cleansing of Ottoman Muslims,” Justin McCarthy, a historian and demographer at Louisville University, shed light on massacre and exile of Muslims in Balkans, Caucasus and Anatolia.
The West, in calling the 1915 events “genocide,” ignored the pain of millions of Muslims who were massacred or forced to leave their homelands during the last period of the Ottoman Empire.
The 1915 events took place during World War I when a portion of the Armenian population living in the Ottoman Empire sided with the invading Russians and revolted.
The relocation of Armenians by the Ottomans in Eastern Anatolia following the revolts resulted in numerous casualties. Turkey does not dispute that there were casualties on both sides, but rejects calling the events “genocide.”
Turkey has called for the establishment of a joint commission of historians and the opening of archives to study and uncover what happened between the Ottoman Empire and its Armenian citizens.
In his 1995 book, “Death and Exile: The Ethnic Cleansing of Ottoman Muslims,” Justin McCarthy, a historian and demographer at Louisville University, shed light on the massacre and exile of Muslims in the Balkans, the Caucasus and Anatolia that took place from 1821-1922.
McCarthy wrote about the mass killings against the Muslim population inside the Ottoman Empire’s borders after it entered a weakening process, adding that more than five million Muslims were killed, exiled or forced to migrate, where they died of hunger and disease.
In addition, the history of the massacres Muslims faced in the Balkans, the Caucasus and Anatolia is not included in any publication and their losses are not taught in history classes, either.
First massacre by Greece
The Turkish people in western Thrace became the target of armed Greek groups in the early 1800s as they were viewed as an obstacle to creating a Greece that “only belonged to Greeks.” In 1821, Turks living in villages and towns were taken out of their homes and massacred. More than 25,000 Turks from western Thrace are believed to have been killed during this period.
Muslims forced to migrate
According to McCarthy’s book, in the early 19th century, Noghai and Crimean Tatars were offered two options within the scope of the “Russianization policy” in the region. They could either be sent to the inner regions of Russia or to the Ottoman Empire.
The book says that the migration of Noghai Tatars lasted until 1860 and at least 300,000 Tatars had to migrate from their homelands. In addition, the balance of the Caucasus and the Ottoman Empire during the 19th century was turned upside down with the Russian invasions, Armenian revolts and Muslims from the Caucasus being forced to migrate.
Ahead of the Russian invasion, the Muslim people in Caucasia were composed of Turks, from the Azerbaijan-Yerevan region, and of Circassian, Abkhasian, Chechen-Ingushetian and Dagestanian nationals.
After the Russians seized control of Caucasia, they forced the Muslims there to migrate, the book states. The Muslim Circassians and other Caucasian people were put on ships and taken to the first destination inside the borders of the Ottoman Empire, the Trabzon Port, which today is in northern Turkey.
Those who died of disease and poor nutrition were reported to have been over 30,000.
Justin McCarthy discusses the massacres committed in the eastern states of the Ottoman Empire and Caucasia between 1877 and 1914, saying that the Russians occupied the Muslims’ homelands and Armenians were trying to seize the areas left by the Russians.
The author said that during the war between Muslims and Armenians in eastern Anatolia, 62 percent of Muslims in Van province, 42 percent in Bitlis province and 31 percent in Erzurum province were massacred.
Changing population distribution in Balkans
McCarthy said the Russo-Turkish War (1877–78) turned into a havoc for Turks living in Bulgaria due to massacres by Bulgaria and Russia, disease, hunger and bad camping conditions.
The book discusses how Russians, who wanted to annihilate Turkish presence in Bulgaria, set fire to the homes of Turks and collaborated with the Bulgarians to prevent the return of Turks. In 1911, the population distribution completely changed and with the losses in the Balkan wars, Muslims lost being the majority in the Balkans.
Massacring Turks in Izmir
The book also touched on a massive massacre of Turkish people during the Greek occupation of western Anatolia on May 15, 1919.
Muslims composed 80 percent of the population during that time, but Turkish villages were burnt and destroyed. In addition, between the 1912 Independence War and 1922, more than 1.2 million Muslims were killed. When the war ended, the minority Muslim groups were forced to leave their homelands. AA
Some acts of the Greeks, who might be involved in crimes against humanity:
The massacres, genocides and crimes against the Turks / Muslims, in Romelia and Anatolia
The massacres, genocides and crimes against the Macedonians
The massacres, genocides and crimes against the Vlahs
The massacres, genocides and crimes against the Bosnians
The massacres, genocides and crimes against the Bulgarians
The massacres, genocides and crimes against the Albanians
The massacres, genocides and crimes against the Cyriot Turks
Greece accused of ‘genocide’ of Macedonian people
Macedonian NGOs slam the Greek government’s invention, and it is merely the continuation and internationalization of its century-old domestic policy of denial of the ethnic identity of its Macedonian minority.
Macedonian NGOs called for the establishment of an independent commission of inquiry to look into the human rights violations as well as crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide committed against the Macedonian minority in Greece since 1913.
“The Greek government must deal with its past and once and for all publicly recognize and apologize for the crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide it committed upon the Macedonian minority in Greece since 1913,” the statement added.
Macedonian Genocide by Greeks
1913, when 51% of Macedonia was awarded to Greece, no thanks to the Bucharest Treaty of 1913, following the Balkan Wars, Greece commenced exhaustive acts of genocide and persecution on its supposedly non-existent minorities during the 20th Century alone, particularly those who refer to themselves as Macedonian, Turkish and Vlach. Many such acts are well documented by the independent Greek – Human Rights Watch / Helsinki Monitor, which deals with the delicate issue of human rights within Greece.
Macedonians, under a Greek Occupation, were forbidden to speak their mother tongue, practice their culture or even bare a Macedonian name. Hundreds of thousands of Macedonians were forced into exile and thousands more were murdered in numerous attacks lead by the Greek government and Greek Orthodox Church.
The Greek government, with the August 10th, 1929 act “Agreement for the protection of the non-Greek population living in Greece”, was obliged to respect “the interests of the residents who were different from Greek by ethnicity, language or religion”. This, however, did not deter the Greeks
Greek fascist regime of Ioannis Metaxas
Violent massacres occurred in which Greek civilians were told by their government and church to take up arms and attack Macedonian settlements, killing without remorse. One such massacre was the Zagoricani village massacre, a well-documented act that occurred in this village situated on the outskirts of Kostur (Kastoria in modern day Northern Greece). Further incidents and acts of persecution occurred under the Greek fascist regime of Ioannis Metaxas and more recently the likes of foreign minister, George Papandreou.
The Greek civil war, which ended in 1949, resulted in over 40,000 Macedonian children being separated from their parents and forced into exile, known to the Macedonian Diaspora simply as “the child refugees” (Deca Begalci) – some never allowed to return back to their birthplace to this day.