August 10th, 1920: The Signing of the Treaty of Sevres - "A Greece of Two Continents and Five Seas"

By 2 months ago

Greece on this day 102 years ago, fulfilled its vision of the "Greece of Two Continents and Five Seas", by signing the Treaty of Sèvres.

Ionia and Eastern Thrace would join, Western Thrace, Macedonia, Northern Epirus, Epirus, the Ionian Islands, Thessaly, Sterea Ellada, Attica, Peloponnese, Crete, North Aegean Islands and the Cyclades, to form an expanded Greece.

A small strip of land surrounding both sides of the Dardanelles and the Bosporus was classified as an - Internationally administered, neutral de-militarised zone - with scope for its incorporation in the near future.

Cyprus and the Dodecanese Islands, were occupied by the British and the Italians at this time.

The Treaty of Sèvres signed between the Allies of World War I and the Ottoman Empire ceded large parts of Ottoman territory to France, the United Kingdom, Greece and Italy, as well as creating large occupation zones within the Ottoman Empire.

The 1920 Treaty of Sèvres was a draft treaty between the Ottoman Empire and the Principal Allied Powers. It was ultimately shelved because of Turkish non-ratification and was replaced by the Treaty of Lausanne.

It was one of a series of treaties that the Central Powers signed with the Allied Powers after their defeat in World War I. Hostilities had already ended with the Armistice of Mudros.

The Treaty marked the beginning of the partitioning of the Ottoman Empire. The treaty's stipulations included the renunciation of most territory not inhabited by Turkish-speaking people and their cession to the Allied administration.

The ceding of Eastern Mediterranean lands saw the introduction of novel polities, including the British Mandate for Palestine and the French Mandate for Syria and Lebanon.

The terms stirred hostility and Turkish nationalism. The treaty's signatories were stripped of their citizenship by the Grand National Assembly, led by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, which ignited the so-called "Turkish War of Independence."

Atatürk led the Turkish nationalists in the war to defeat the combined armies of the signatories of the Treaty of Sèvres, as well as to continue the genocide of Anatolia's and Eastern Thrace's Christians, namely Greeks, Armenians and Assyrians.

The 1923 Treaty of Lausanne, which superseded the Treaty of Sèvres, ended the conflict and saw the establishment of the Republic of Turkey, with Greece losing Ionia and Eastern Thrace.

READ MORE: Turkey is Europe’: Çavuşoğlu stresses Ankara’s role in EU security.

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