“Today Hellenism everywhere celebrates. It is the day that Greece (…) shouted “NO” against the brutal and brazen blackmail of the fascist and Nazi forces of the Axis,” he said.
“The ‘NO’ [OXI] is mentioned, honoured and celebrated by the Greeks in our homeland and all over the world, wherever the Greek soul pulsates. October 28, 1940, summarises in a historical moment the memories, experiences and values that always guide our national life. Complete denial of submission, universal rejection of totalitarianism, commitment to democratic ethos and national dignity.”
In his statement, Vlasis went on to say that Greece’s participation in World War II is not a coincidence in the course of Greek and European history. “It is a brave decision by our ancestors to fight against an opponent who was numerically superior and, until then, invincible. In the face of the superiority of the Axis powers, the Greeks offered their free and invaluable opinion. A country small in size but historically committed to the defence of high ideals, it claimed the first great victories on the battlefield, which struck a chord and marked the beginning of the end of fascism and Nazism.”
OXI Day is “more relevant and instructive than ever,” the Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister highlighted, as Greece will always counter with a relentless “NO” [OXI] to blackmail and threats, including the violation of international law and the tensions with Turkey at both the Evros border and in the Eastern Mediterranean.
“By honouring October 28, 1940, all Greeks become like a fist. We join our forces and intensify the struggle for the defence of our national rights with the compass of strength and national solidarity that characterises us,” he concluded.