United States

RI State Senator Raptakis on Resolution Commemorating Greek Pontian Genocide

PROVIDENCE, RI – Rhode Island State Senator Leonidas P. Raptakis (D-District 33, Coventry, and West Greenwich) introduced a Senate resolution (2023-S 1027) commemorating May 19 as the 104th anniversary of the Greek Pontian Genocide that was supported by the entire Rhode Island State Senate. Senator Raptakis has introduced such a resolution every year since 2008.

From 1914 until 1922, in a systematic attempt to exterminate an entire population, the Ottoman Turks directed the killing of 353,000 Pontian and Anatolian Greeks and over a million Armenians and Assyrians living in Pontos.

“This resolution pays tribute to the survivors of this atrocious period, as well as their descendants, who have made countless contributions to the enrichment of our culture and our way of life here in the Ocean State and who stand as inspirations to oppressed people around the world. May we never forget the brutality the Pontian Greeks experienced at the hands of the Ottoman Empire, and may we learn the hard lessons from the past, the history of the Pontian Genocide, so all genocides never happen again,” said Senator Raptakis.

Rhode Island State Senator Leonidas Raptakis introduced a Senate resolution (2023-S 1027) commemorating May 19 as the 104th anniversary of the Greek Pontian Genocide. (Photo: Courtesy of Senator Raptakis)

The Ottoman Empire and Kemal’s Young Turks engaged in exile, starvation, slaughter, and murder, using axes and fire to massacre the Pontic Greek population and perpetrate the first mass genocide of the 20th century. Soon after, the Turks continued their parade of destruction when they began the Armenian Genocide.

Copies of the resolution were sent to Gus Tsiflidis, President the Pan-Pontian Federation of USA and Canada, Georgios Gialtouridis of the Pontian Society ‘Panagia Soumela’ Boston, Consul General of Greece in Boston Symeon Tygos, and Ioannis Konstantatos, Mayor of the Municipality of Ellinikon-Argyroupolis, Athens, Greece.


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