President heads to Thessaloniki to attend 4-day events as Greece prepares for ‘OHI’ Day

President heads to Thessaloniki to attend 4-day events as Greece prepares for 'OHI' Day 1

The President of the Hellenic Republic Katerina Sakellaropoulou is heading to Thessaloniki to attend 4-day events for the celebration of the city’s patron saint Aghios Dimitrios and October 28 1940 ‘Ohi’ Day commemorative events, starting Monday.

At 18:30 on Monday, Sakellaropoulou will attend an event about Cyprus’ National Revival Struggle at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, which is co-organized with the University of Cyprus, in the presence of Cyprus’ President Nicos Anastasiades.

At 08:15 on Tuesday morning, Aghios Dimitrios Day, she will attend a flag raising ceremony at the White Tower of Thessaloniki, followed by a liturgy at St. Dimitrios church. At 13:30 she will sit at a dinner in the Thessaloniki Guard Officers Club, and at 17:30 she will attend the inauguration of the newly renovated building of the Museum of the Macedonian Struggle. At 18:30, she will attend an event at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki which commemorates patron saint Aghios Dimitrios, as well as the 109th anniversary of the city’s liberation from Ottoman rule, and the 1940 so-called Greek Saga.

At 10:30 on Wednesday morning, October 27, Sakellaropoulou will attend an officers’ oath-taking ceremony at the Military School of Officers, and at 12 noon she will attend the inauguration of the ‘Ntinos Christianopoulos’ archive exhibition at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki’s main library. At 18:00 she will attend the launch of the ‘Philhellenisms, 1780-1860’ exhibition at the Museum of Byzantine Culture, and at 19:00 she will visit the Thessaloniki Municipal Gallery-Casa Bianca where she will be given a tour of the ‘Nikolaos Gyzis-120 years since his death’ exhibition. At 21:00, she will attend a concert dedicated to the 80 years since the Greek 1940 Saga at the Thessaloniki Concert Hall.

On ‘Ohi’ Day October 28, Sakellaropoulou will lay a wreath at the Heroes Monument at the 3rd Army Battalion in Thessaloniki, and at 11:00 she will attend the military parade, which will wrap up the October 28 commemorative events at Thessaloniki.

On October 28 in 1940 Greece denied (‘Ohi’ – ‘No’ in Greek) Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini’s request to allow Italian troops to cross the border into Greece.



OHI Day (“Anniversary of the No”) is celebrated throughout Greece, Cyprus and the Greek communities around the world on 28 October each year. OHI Day commemorates the rejection by Greek Prime Minister Ioannis Metaxas of the ultimatum made by Italian dictator Benito Mussolini on 28 October 1940, the Hellenic counterattack against the invading Italian forces at the mountains of Pindus during the Greco-Italian War, and the Greek Resistance during the Axis occupation.

This ultimatum, which was presented to Metaxas by the Italian ambassador to Greece, Emanuele Grazzi, shortly after 03:00 am on 28 October 1940, who had just come from a party in the Italian embassy in Athens, demanded Greece allow Axis forces to enter Greek territory and occupy certain unspecified “strategic locations” or otherwise face war. It was allegedly answered with a single laconic word: όχι (No! ‘Ohi’). However, his actual reply was, “Alors, c’est la guerre!” (Then it is war!).

In response to Metaxas’s refusal, Italian troops stationed in Albania, then an Italian protectorate, attacked the Greek border at 05:30 am—the beginning of Greece’s participation in World War II (see Greco-Italian War and the Battle of Greece).

On the morning of 28 October, the Greek population took to the streets, irrespective of political affiliation, shouting ‘ohi’. From 1942, it was celebrated as Ohi Day, first mostly among the members of the resistance and after the war by all the Greeks.

During the war, 28 October was commemorated yearly in Greece and Cyprus and Greek communities around the world, and after World War II it became a public holiday in Greece and Cyprus. The events of 1940 are commemorated every year with military and student parades. On every anniversary, most public buildings and residences are decorated with national flags. Schools and all places of work are closed.
(source: Wiki)

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