With Turkey sponsoring Azerbaijan’s invasion attempt of the Armenian-majority region of Artsakh, Greeks all across the world, whether it be in Greece, Cyprus or in the diaspora, have expressed endless solidarity to the Armenian people.
Since the Turkish-sponsored aggression against Artsakh began, Greek and Cypriot Members of the European Parliament have been pushing for sanctions against Azerbaijan, Greek hackers have brought down Azerbaijani government websites and a fake ‘Armenian charity,’ Pontian Greek diaspora communities have donated large amounts of money, and in the Australian city of Melbourne, signs of solidarity for Armenia have started to appear.
Melbourne is the third largest Greek city in the world, after Athens and Thessaloniki. In fact, Melbourne has more Greeks then the Cypriot capital of Nicosia, large Greek cities like Patras, and other diaspora communities like those in New York and Chicago.
Although Greeks in Melbourne are found throughout the city, the main hub without a doubt is Oakleigh, especially as it looks like any other Greek plateia (market square) teleported directly into Australia.
Just as the Turkish-sponsored war against Armenians has distressed Greeks in Greece and Cyprus, the same distress is felt in the diaspora communities, prompting unknown people in Oakleigh to display signs of solidarity for the Armenian people.
This was first uploaded to social media by John Barbagiannis:
“Seen hanging on an overpass in the Melbourne suburb of Oakleigh today. The Armenian flag with Greek writing: “Θα νικήσουνε” – we will win. “Η Αρσαχ είναι Αρμενία” – Arstakh is Armenia. No idea who did this!” he said on Twitter yesterday.
Seen hanging on an overpass in the Melbourne suburb of Oakleigh today. The Armenian flag with Greek writing: “Θα νικήσουνε” – we will win. “Η Αρσαχ είναι Αρμενία” – Arstakh is Armenia. No idea who did this! #RecognizeArtsakh #ArtsakhStrong #Artsakh #ArtsakhIsArmenia pic.twitter.com/6v4qr1cHrF
— John Barbagiannis (@JBarbagiannis) October 14, 2020
Today he uploaded another image of a sign he found in Oakleigh.
“Another sign in Oakleigh today too…. “Peace for Armenia,” he said on Twitter.
Another sign in Oakleigh today too…. “Peace for Armenia”….. #Artsakh #ArtsakhRepublic #ArtsakhStrong #ArtsakhIsArmenia #StopAzerbaijanAggression #StopErdogan #StandWithArmenia pic.twitter.com/x96FS3uqGu
— John Barbagiannis (@JBarbagiannis) October 15, 2020
Oakleigh is home to the Oakleigh Cannons Football club established by Greek immigrants in 1972, the Agioi Anargyroi Greek Orthodox Church is also located in Oakleigh, and several Greek-owned and styled tavernas, restaurants, bakeries and cafes exist in the suburb.
With such a heavy Greek presence it is unsurprising that signs of solidarity for Armenians are beginning to appear.