Submission to the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence
and Trade: Human Rights Sub-Committee
The Human Rights Situation of Macedonians in Greece and Australia
By Aegean Macedonian Association of Australia
Published in: Parliament of The Commonwealth of Australia Joint Standing
Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade, Human Rights Sub-Committee,
(Reference: Australia's Efforts to Promote and Protect Human Rights),
Submissions and Incorporated Documents, Volume 2, Canberra 19 August 1993
Submission to the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence
and Trade: Human Rights Sub-Committee
Section 1: Overview
Section 2: Examples of Human Rights Abuses Between 1913 and the Present
Section 3: The Situation in Australia
List of Enclosures
Appendix 1: Freedom of Expression: the Case of Hristos Sideropoulos and
Appendix 2: The Case of Archimandrite Nikodemos Tsarknias
Appendix 3: The Case of Michael Papadakis
Appendix 4: The Case of the Macedonian "child refugees"
Appendix 5: The Situation of the Macedonians in Greece
Appendix 6: The Situation in Australia
Appendix 7: Various Books and Reports
NOTE: The above mentioned supporting documents are with the Department
of Foreign Affairs and Trade Human Rights Sub-Committee in Canberra
As a democratic and multicultural country, Australia has an important
role to play in the promotion of human rights around the world. The Association
requests the Australian Government to use its good standing with the international
community and the Greek Government in particular to raise the following
matters with the Greek Government:
1. To allow the free choice of national identity in accordance with international
2. To officially recognize the existence of a Macedonian minority in Greece
and cease its perennial policy of non-recognition of the many ethnic minorities
3. To improve the availability of human rights to Macedonians in Greece,
in particular the right to use the Macedonian language; the right to have
the Macedonian language taught at all levels of the school system; the
right to freedom of religion including the establishment of Macedonian
churches; and the right to have Macedonian language radio, television,
newspapers, and other cultural media.
4. To allow Macedonians to use their proper Macedonian names and to cease
the mandatory use of Greek versions.
5. To allow Macedonian representatives at all levels of public life, including
6. To end the persecution of Macedonian human rights campaigners in Greece,
including the internationally known cases of Hristos Sideropoulos, Tasos
Bulis, and Archimandrite Nikodemos Tsarknias. We request the Australian
government to monitor the appeal of Hristos Sideropoulos and Tasos Bulis,
the April 1994 trial of Archimandrite Nikodemos Tsarknias, other current
cases, and new cases as they arise.
7. To cease State discrimination whereby Macedonians and Macedonian activists
have been dismissed from employment.
8. To implement United Nations Resolution 193C (III) of November 27, 1948
which calls for the free repatriation of all child refugees from the Greek
Civil War of 1946-49.
9. To repeal the Greek laws 106841 and 1540 which discriminate against
Macedonians who fled from Greece during the Greek Civil War and are still
unable to repatriate to Greece or to reclaim their property.
10. To return Greek citizenship and its attendant rights to all Macedonians
whose Greek citizenship has been revoked.
11. To allow the 550 child refugees resident in Australia to return to
Greece, to reclaim their Greek citizenship if desired, and to reclaim
their ancestral property.
12. To legislate for the nationalistic elements in the Greek media to
cease their persecution of the Macedonian minority and to require these
media to give Macedonians a right of reply.
13. For Greece to comply with all international human rights agreements
to which it is a signatory, particularly the International Convention
on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
14. For Greece to ratify the International Covenant on Civil and Political,
the Optional Protocol on Civil and Political Rights, and the International
Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid.
The Association's remaining recommendations concern Australia. There are
a number of areas in this country where Australian citizens of Macedonian
background, including Macedonians from Greece, receive less than fair
treatment that can be seen as a denial of human rights.
As these areas fall within the influence of the Australian government,
the Association recommends that the Australian Government implement measures
15. Increase the amount of Macedonian language programing on SBS Television
in proportion to the size of the Australian Macedonian population.
16. Investigate why SBS Television broadcasts an average of 156 hours
of Greek language programing per year, year after year, while it broadcasts
an average of only 2.75 hours of Macedonian language programing per year,
year after year. The investigation should also examine why SBS Television
employs a vastly disproportionate number of personnel of Greek background,
including on screen identities, compared to other nationalities, including
17. Allow the Australian Bureau of Statistics to create a country code
for Macedonia for use in the next Census.
18. Instruct the Australian Bureau of Statistics to collate credible statistics
on the number of Macedonians in Australia, something it cannot do at present
despite having had credible figures on other nationalities for many decades.
19. Instruct the Australian Bureau of Statistics to devise a methodology
for the next Census that will allow Macedonians who have emigrated from
Greece to be counted as Macedonians. At present the Birthplace and Birthplace
of Parents questions in the Census force these Macedonians to place Greece
as their country of origin or their parents birth and thus to be counted
as Greek. This situation overstates the number of Greeks in Australia
and understates the number of Macedonians, a situation that is politically
and morally abhorrent to many of our members, as well as casting serious
doubts on the credibility of the ABS data.
20. Investigate why Telecom politicized itself and denied the Republic
of Macedonia the right to self identify by placing the country under the
letter F in the White Pages rather than under the letter M.
21. Investigate why the Australian Customs politicized itself by requiring
an Australian importer of Macedonian background to re-label goods imported
from the Republic of Macedonia.
22. Request the Australian Labor Party to disassociate itself from a December
10, 1991 letter written by the Greek Central Committee of the Australian
Labor Party and addressed to all Federal and State Labor parliamentarians.
This letter explicitly denies the existence of a Macedonian minority in
23. Investigate the level of Greek influence in the formulation of Australian
foreign policy. This should include the excessive influence on the policy
on Cyprus and other matters as evidenced in the paper The Role Of The
Greek Communities In The Formulation Of Australian Foreign Policy: With
Particular Reference To Cyprus, which was authored by a Greek-Australian
parliamentarian and presented at the Institute of International Relations
Conference "The Greek Diaspora in Foreign Policy", held in Athens.
Submission to the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence
and Trade: Human Rights Sub-Committee
from the Aegean Macedonian Association of Australia
The Aegean Macedonian Association of Australia welcomes the opportunity
to put before the Human Rights Sub-Committee the long standing concerns
of Australia's Aegean Macedonian community regarding the intense and continuous
suppression of the human rights of ethnic Macedonians in Greece.
The Aegean Macedonian Association of Australia represents the interests
of an estimated 90,000 Macedonians in Australia who originate from the
part of Macedonia which is now incorporated into Greece. We emphasize,
however, that our ethnic origin is Macedonian, not Greek: we speak Macedonian,
identify as Macedonian, and have a separate, wholly Macedonian culture.
The Aegean Macedonian community is ethnically related to the Macedonian
immigrants from the Republic of Macedonia, which was formerly part of
Yugoslavia. In addition the estimated 90,000 Aegean Macedonians in Australia,
there are another estimated 100,000 immigrants from the Republic of Macedonia.
Many of the members of the Aegean Macedonian Association of Australia
are political refugees from Greece, others are economic refugees due to
the Greek policy of not developing Macedonian areas, and the majority
still have family members in Greece. Therefore the Association cannot
overstate the strength of feeling from our members on the matter of human
rights abuses in Greece.
At the end of the Second Balkan War in 1913 the original Macedonia was
divided between Greece, which obtained 51 per cent of the territory, Serbia,
which obtained 39 per cent, and Bulgaria which obtained 10 per cent.
At the time of the tri-partition, the population was predominately Macedonian,
with well established Turkish, Bulgarian, Vlach, Thracian, Jewish and
The Greek takeover of Aegean Macedonia was quickly followed by a ruthless
campaign of ethnic cleansing of much of the non-Greek population.
The Bulgarian and Turkish minorities were largely ethnically cleansed
between 1923 and 1926 with the official exchange of populations between
Greece and Bulgaria and Greece and Turkey. Among those resettled were
many Bulgarian Macedonians and muslim Macedonians.
However, close to a million Macedonians remained and in regard to these
a policy of denationalization and hellenization was instigated. The process
of political repression and denial of human rights included:
* The compulsory changing of Macedonian first and family names to Greek
* The banning of the use of the Macedonian language.
* The banning of Macedonian schools.
* The banning of Macedonian churches.
* The banning of Macedonian newspapers, books, radio programs, dancing
and other cultural expression.
* A massive population transfer of 632,000 Greeks from Turkey into Aegean
Macedonia during the 1920s. This saw a major change in the ethnic composition
of the region, and the Macedonians suddenly found themselves a significant
national minority within what was previously their own country.
These facts, together with active encouragement from the Greek government,
saw the commencement of large scale Macedonian emigration from Greece,
with many of these people settling in Australia, Canada and the US.
This anti-Macedonian policy was particularly ruthless during the Metaxas
dictatorship of the 1930s and included prison camps where Macedonians
were killed in their thousands. Their only crime was to be Macedonian
and/ or speak their native language.
Writing in 1938, Australian author Bert Birtles in his book, Exiles in
the Aegean, said "If Greece has no Jewish problem, she has the Macedonians.
In the name of "Hellenization" these people are being persecuted continually
and arrested for the most fantastic reasons. Metaxas' way of inculcating
the proper nationalist spirit among them has been to change all the native
place-names into Greek and to forbid use of the native language. For displaying
the slightest resistance to this edict - for this too is a danger to the
security of the State - peasants and villagers have been exiled without
trial." (see appendix 5)
A second period of intense repression followed the Greek Civil War of
1946-49 when the Macedonian minority sided with the Greek communists who
had promised them national autonomy and human rights if they won the war.
Their loss saw another wave of emigrants from Aegean Macedonia. Many of
these also came to Australia.
Among the refugees were 28,00 Macedonian children between the ages of
two and 14. These were mostly the children of the Macedonian freedom fighters
whose parents were fearful for their safety after the war.
The children were evacuated to the Eastern bloc countries. Although the
children of Greek fighters were officially pardoned in the 1980s and allowed
back into Greece, this human right has not been extended to the Macedonian
children. Today there are 550 such children, now adults, living in Australia.
These are among the many thousands who are not allowed back into Greece
and have never been reunited with their families. (Appendices 4 and 7)
The Greek government's policy of ruthless denationalization of the Macedonian
minority has continued to the present day. The estimates of the number
of Macedonians in Greece today are between 300,000 and one million. However
most of these are too afraid to admit to their Macedonian ancestry.
Several specific cases of current human rights abuses have attracted the
attention of Amnesty International. The following examples of repression
between 1913 and the present, which are by no means exhaustive, put the
current situation into perspective.
Examples of Human Rights Abuses Between 1913 and the Present
* In 1913 following its victory in the First and Second Balkan Wars, Greece
officially annexed 51 per cent of Macedonia. This was against the desire
of the population of Macedonia for an independent and autonomous country.
* In 1916 the author John Reed in his book, The War in Eastern Europe,
wrote about the aftermath of the First Balkan War and how the Greeks and
Serbians tried to legitimize their takeover of the territory while also
trying to wipe out the Bulgarian influence.
He wrote "A thousand Greek and Serbian publicists began to fill the world
with their shouting about the essentially Greek or Serbian character of
the populations of their different spheres. The Serbs gave the unhappy
Macedonians twenty four hours to renounce their nationality and proclaim
themselves Serbs, and the Greeks did the same. Refusal meant murder or
expulsion. Greek and Serbian colonists were poured into the occupied country...The
Greek newspapers began to talk about a Macedonia peopled entirely with
Greeks - and they explained the fact that no one spoke Greek by calling
the people "Bulgarophone" Greeks...the Greek army entered villages where
no one spoke their language. "What do you mean by speaking Bulgarian?"
cried the officers. "This is Greece and you must speak Greek"."
* The Carnegie Report on the Balkan Wars indicated that 161 villages were
burned down and more than 16,000 houses were destroyed in the Aegean part
* On August 10th, 1920 at Serves, Paris, the countries of Britain, France,
Italy and Japan concluded an agreement with Greece On the Protection of
Non?Greek Nations. Greece pledged full protection of the Macedonian national
minority, its language and culture and the opening of Macedonian schools.
In Section 2 Greece pledged to extend full care over the life and freedom
of all citizens irrespective of their origin, nationality, language, faith.
Clause 7 reads: "All Greek citizens will avail themselves of the same
civic and political rights irrespective of nationality, language and faith...
and to legally guarantee the freedom of use by each citizen of any language
in personal, trade and religious contacts, in print and publications or
Clause 8 states: "Greek citizens belonging to national, religious or language
minorities will be treated on a par with native Greeks."
Clause 9 reads: As regards education, the Greek government will create
appropriate facilitations and will safeguard the possibility of learning
one's own language in schools of towns and areas inhabited by citizens
speaking a language different than Greek."
On September 4, 1925, the office of High Commissioner for National Minorities
was established at Salonika, northern Greece, for the observance of international
agreements concerning national minorities.
However, none of these assurances were put into practice. Instead the
Greek government adopted a policy of denationalization and assimilation
while simultaneously denying the existence of a Macedonian minority.
* In 1925 the ABECEDAR booklet was published in Athens. This was an elementary
book for teaching the Macedonian language and was written in the Latin
alphabet. It was designed for Macedonian children. However, it was never
distributed to them. After the departure of the representatives of the
League of Nations, the booklets were destroyed.
This booklet was republished in Perth in 1993 by the Macedonian Information
Centre to prove the booklet's existence and the fact that Greece was once
accountable to the world for its Macedonian minority.
* In the 1920s Macedonian schools were closed, not opened. Kindergartens
were established in Macedonian localities so children could be inculcated
in a Greek spirit and to limit the influence of parents. This was despite
a November 11, 1930 press conference in Athens at which prime minister
Eleaterios Venizelos said, "The problem of a Macedonian national minority
will be solved and I will be the first one to commit myself to the opening
of Macedonian schools if the nation so wishes."
* On March 30, 1927 the Greek newspaper Rizospastis wrote that 500,000
Macedonians were resettled to Bulgaria.
* On the basis of a Greek thesis: "the faith determines the nation", hundreds
of thousands of Turks and Macedonians of Muslim faith were resettled to
Asia Minor. They were replaced by 638,253 Greeks brought in from Asia
* November 1926: a legal Act was issued to change Macedonian geographic
names into the Greek version. The news of the Act was published in the
Greek government daily Efimeris tis Kiverniseos No. 322 of November 21,
1926. The same newspaper in its No. 346 published the new, official, Greek
names. The names of the people were changed too. First names as well as
family names were changed to Greek versions. These are still officially
binding to this day.
* In 1929 a legal Act was issued On the Protection of Public Order, whereby
each demand for nationality rights was regarded as high treason. This
law is still in force.
* On December 18, 1936 the Metaxas dictatorship issued a legal Act On
the Activity Against State Security. On the basis of this Act, thousands
of Macedonians were arrested, imprisoned or expelled from Greece.
* On September 7, 1938 the legal Act 2366 was issued. This banned the
use of the Macedonian language. All Macedonian localities were flooded
with posters that read "Speak Greek". Evening schools were opened in which
adult Macedonians were taught Greek. There was not a single Macedonian
school at the time. It is estimated that nearly 5,000 Macedonians were
imprisoned or sent to prison camps for having used the Macedonian language.
* During the Greek Civil War, the Headquarters of the Democratic Greek
Army reported that from mid?1945 to May 20, 1947 in Western Macedonia
alone 13,529 Macedonians were tortured, 3,215 were imprisoned and 268
were executed without trial. In addition, 1,891 houses were burnt down
and 1,553 were looted. 13,808 Macedonians were resettled by force.
* During the war, Greek-run prison camps where Macedonians were imprisoned,
tortured and murdered included: the island of Ikaria near Turkey, the
island of Makronis near Athens, the jail Averov near Athens, the jail
at Larica near the Volos Peninsula, and in the jail at Thessaloniki. Among
other places, there were mass killings on Vicho, Gramos, Kaymakchalan,
and at Mala Prespa in Albania.
* In 1947, during the Greek Civil War, the legal Act L?2 was issued. This
meant that all who left Greece without the consent of the Greek government
were stripped of Greek citizenship and banned from returning to the country.
The law applied to Greeks and Macedonians, but in its modernized version
the Act is binding only on Macedonians. It prevents Macedonians but not
Greeks who fought against the winning side to return to Greece and reclaim
property. Among those not allowed to return to Greece are the 28,000 child
refugees who have not renounced their Macedonian ethnicity.
* On January 20, 1948 the legal Act M was issued. This allowed the Greek
government to confiscate the property of those who were stripped of their
citizenship. The law was updated in 1985 to exclude Greeks but it is still
binding on Macedonians. * On November 27, 1948 the United Nations issued
resolution 193C (III) which called for the repatriation of all child refugees
back to Greece. However, discriminatory laws introduced by the Greek government
have prevented the free return of many thousands of the Macedonian child
refugees. This is still the case in 1993.
* On August 23, 1953 the legal Act 2536 was issued. This meant that all
those who left Greece and who did not return within three years' time
could be deprived of their property. This facilitated the confiscation
of Macedonian property.
* Around the same time a decision was taken to resettle Macedonians. A
wide ranging media campaign was launched to induce the Macedonians to
leave their native areas voluntarily and to settle in the south of Greece
and on the islands. The Greek intention was to separate Macedonians living
in Greece from their relatives, living in the Republic of Macedonia in
Yugoslavia, and to create a 60 kilometre?wide belt along the border with
then Yugoslavia where "the faithful sons of the Greek nation" could be
A firm reaction from Yugoslavia saw the cancellation of the plan.
* In 1959 the legal Act 3958 was issued. This allowed for the confiscation
of the land of those (Macedonians) who left Greece and did not return
within five years' time. The law was amended in 1985, but it is still
binding on Macedonians.
* In 1960 the first secretary of the Greek Communist Party, H Florakis,
was brought to court charged with high treason for supporting the Macedonian
In September 1988 at the press conference in Salonika, the same Florakis
said that the Greek Communist Party had changed its views and that it
now recognized neither the Macedonians nor the Macedonian national minority.
On August 30, 1989, the same H Florakis demanded from the Greek parliament
the eradication from the currently legally binding Acts the term "Greek
by origin" which made it impossible for the Macedonians to return to their
homeland and to recover their property and damages. He branded this term
The Greek press charged him with treason in order to win the electorate,
implying the existence of Macedonian electors.
* In 1961 Gramatnikowski Michal saw his mother on the Greek frontier from
a distance of 100 metres. The Greek border guards would not permit them
to come closer.
Filip Wasilew Dimitris from Pozdivista (official Greek name: Halara) of
Moscow made repeated attempts to obtain a Greek visa in the Greek embassy
in Moscow. The last application, in August 1989, was to no avail.
Georgios Nicolaos Cocos, a Macedonian political refugee who fought against
German armoured divisions in the defence of Greece, was living in Tashkent
(former Soviet Union) and wished to return to Greece. Despite his repeated
attempts the Greek authorities did not give him a visa. Not even direct
request from the death bed and addressed to the prime minister Andreas
Papandreou helped. He died without seeing his family, his home and his
Cinika Sandra twice tried to go to her home village in Greece on an excursion
for old aged and disabled pensioners. Each time the Greek embassy in Warsaw
would give visas only to Greeks by origin. Cinika as well as other Macedonians,
including mixed Greek?Macedonian couples, were refused visas.
* In 1962 the legal Act 4234 was issued. Persons who were stripped of
their Greek citizenship were banned from returning to Greece. A ban on
crossing the Greek border also extended to spouses and children. This
law is still in force for Macedonians, including those who left Greece
* Macedonians abroad believed that Greek diplomatic posts have a ban on
issuing visas to Macedonians and have compiled lists of Macedonian refugees
from Greece to enforce this.
* In 1969 a legal Act was issued to allow the settlement by ethnic Greeks
of Macedonian farms left behind.
* The Greek government has continued its ethnic restocking program with
the relocation in Aegean Macedonia of over one hundred thousand immigrants
of Greek origin from the ex?Soviet Union. These are termed Pontiac Greeks.
* In 1978 the consul of the Greek embassy in Warsaw, Poland trampled underfoot
a travel document issued by Polish authorities and which had the Polish
national emblem. The reason: the name of the applicant was written in
its Macedonian/ Polish version? Aleksowski Mito and not in Greek, Aleksiu
* In 1980 the Macedonian Michal Gramatnikowski sent a letter to the Greek
prime minister asking him to grant a visa so that he could visit his ill
mother. He received neither a reply nor a visa.
* In early 1982 a confidential report by the security branch of the Greek
police in Salonika came to light. Dated March 8, 1982, the report contained
highly controversial and inhuman recommendations about strategies to deal
with the "Macedonian problem".
* On December 29, 1982 the legal Act 106841 was issued by the government
of Andreas Papandreou. This allowed Greeks by origin who had fled during
the Civil War to return to Greece and reclaim their Greek citizenship.
Macedonians born in Greece and their families were excluded and remain
in exile. Heads of various State administration departments received the
right to use property left in Greece by Macedonian refugees.
Greek authorities frequently reject the requests by Macedonians for the
recovery of their Greek citizenship. This is despite the Universal Declaration
of Human Rights which says that "Everyone has the right to leave every
country, including one's own and to return to his own country," that "Each
man has the right to have a citizenship," and that "No one can be freely
dispossessed of his citizenship."
* In 1983 the Greek government decided that it would no longer recognize
university degrees from the Republic of Macedonia. Its stated reason was
that "the Macedonian language is not internationally recognized." This
is incorrect and hides the real motive.
* On October 17, 1983 Lazo Jovanovski wrote a letter to the Minister of
Internal Affairs asking for the restoration of his citizenship. He has
never received a reply.
The same happened to Spiro Steriovski and Kosta Wlakantchovski, also both
* In 1983 Toli Radovski, who was living in Gdynia, Poland, wrote a letter
to the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Athens asking for the restoration
of his citizenship. He did not receive a reply. The lack of reply forced
him to ask the Centre for Human Rights in Geneva for help. Thanks to the
intervention of the Centre, after four years a reply from Athens arrived.
Quoting the relevant legal Acts, the Ministry of Internal Affairs rejected
his demand for the recovery of citizenship.
In 1984 Toli Radovski wrote a letter to the Ministry of Internal Affairs
asking for a visa. He did not receive the visa nor a reply.
* In 1984 the Movement for Human and National Rights for the Macedonians
of Aegean Macedonia, operating in Greece illegally, issued a Manifest
for Macedonian Human Rights. This states "In Greece human rights are openly
disregarded and our human existence is cursed. We, in the Aegean Macedonia,
are determined to carry our struggle on various levels, employing all
legal means until our rights are guaranteed."
* On April 10, 1985 legal Act 1540/ 85 was issued. This amended the previously
issued Acts regulating property relations so as to make it impossible
for Macedonians to return. This discriminatory Act limits the definition
of political refugees to ethnic Greeks and permits the recovery of illegally
seized property to "Greeks by origin" only. Once again, the Macedonian
refugees from Greece are denied the same rights.
* In 1986 former Minister for Northern Greece, N Martis, addressed a letter
to the Australian Prime Minister, Bob Hawke, entitled Falsification of
the History of Macedonia, in which he denied the existence of a Macedonian
* Several times during the 1980s Greek officials have admonished overseas
officials for recognizing a Macedonian nationality. Minister for Macedonia
and Trakia (previously for Northern Greece) Stelios Papatamelis sent a
letter to Pope John Paul II admonishing him for having uttered his Christmas
and New Year greetings in the "non?existent Macedonian language." Greek
authorities protested to the US ambassador in then Yugoslavia for having
uttered a few sentences in the "non?existent Macedonian language" while
visiting the Republic of Macedonia.
* In June, 1986 at its 49th Congress, the international writers' organization,
PEN, condemned the denial of the Macedonian language by Greece and sent
letters to the Greek PEN Centre and the Greek Minister for Culture. The
Greek response was a denial of the existence of a Macedonian minority.
* In 1987 the Encyclopedia Britannica put the number of Macedonians in
Greece at 180,000. This is considerably more than the Greek government
will admit to, which is around 80,000, but considerably less than what
the Macedonians themselves believe, which varies between 300,000 and one
* In 1987 Macedonian parents in Aegean Macedonia were forced to send their
2 and 3 year old children to "integrated kindergartens" to prevent them
from learning the Macedonian language and culture. The ruling was not
implemented elsewhere in Greece.
* The far right Greek newspaper Stohos has written: "Everyone who will
openly manifest his views concerning the Macedonian minority will curse
the hour of his birth."
* In February 1988, the Athenian newspaper Ergatiki Alilengii criticized
the discriminatory policy of Greek authorities towards Macedonians. It
also criticized the anti?Macedonian hysteria in certain mass media.
* In June 1988, Gona and Tome Miovski of Perth were on their way to Yugoslavia
and wished to visit Greece. They were arrested at Athens airport, beaten
up and locked in separate underground rooms. They were beaten up again
the next day. They were released 24 hours later, after the intervention
of the representative of Yugoslav Airlines and were expelled from Greece.
* On July 5 and 6, 1988 two groups of Macedonian refugees who had come
from Australia and Canada wanted to visit their homeland in Greece. Both
coaches were stopped on the Greek frontier. Surrounded by armed policemen
the coaches stood in the open air at 42 degrees Centigrade: one for two
hours and the other for four hours. Opening of the windows was prohibited.
The passengers had a seal stamped in their passports which forbade them
to cross the Greek frontier. The vehicles and their passengers had to
return. There are photographs and videofilm of this incident.
* During late June and early July 1988 a large demonstration of Macedonians
who had left Greece as children in 1948 took place in Skopje, capital
of the Republic of Macedonia. The demonstration was attended by several
thousand Macedonians from all over the world. A petition to the United
Nations and many national governments was addressed.
* On August 10, 1988, on the 75th anniversary of the division and partition
of Macedonia, a large demonstration by Macedonians was held outside the
UN building in New York.
* On September 4, 1988 Mito Aleksovski addressed an open letter to the
Greek embassy in Warsaw asking for a visa. He received no reply.
* In the northern autumn of 1988, the Alagi newspaper in Lerin (Greek
name Florina) wrote that the Macedonians do exist and that they should
have the full rights of a national minority. The newspaper pledged to
fight for those rights until victory.
* In November 1988 the same newspaper published the statement by one of
the leaders of the Greek Communist Party, Mr Kostopulos, who said that
it was a fact that the Macedonian minority existed in Greece.
* In its issue No 1/89 the Athens monthly Sholiastis published an article
by Mrs Elewteria Panagiopoulou entitled Nationalists and the Inhabitants
of Skopje ? the Gypsies, in which she demands a halt to the discriminatory
policy of authorities and abolition of the inhuman legal acts aimed against
the Macedonians. In another article the same author calls Macedonians
"the Palestinians of Europe".
* In the northern spring of 1989, 90 Greek intellectuals addressed a note
of protest to the Greek government in connection with the common violation
of human rights in Greece.
* In 1989 during the Bicentenary of Australia, Greece organized an exhibition
in Sydney entitled Ancient Macedonia: the Wealth of Greece. The Greek
President Sardzetakis toured various Australian cities and disseminated
anti?Macedonian propaganda. After a sharp reaction from Macedonians in
Australia, the Greek government protested to the Australian government
for letting the Macedonian protests occur.
* On May 11, 1989 a Macedonian folk ensemble was expelled from Greece
without reason. The ensemble had come to the locality of Komotini for
a "Festival of Friendship" at the invitation of its organizers. A similar
occurrence took place in 1988.
* On May 20, 1989 Minister for Macedonia and Trakia (Northern Greece)
Stelios Papatemelis appealed to the Greeks to wage a sacred war against
* On May 28, 1989 the Association of Macedonians in Poland sent to the
Greek embassy an invitation for its first congress. There was no representative
from the embassy and there was no answer to the invitation. On June 10,
1989 the participants of the First Congress of the Association of Macedonians
in Poland addressed a petition to the Greek government concerning the
situation of Macedonians. There was no reply. On June 26, 1989 the Association
of Macedonians in Poland sent a letter to the Greek embassy in Warsaw
concerning visas for Macedonians. The embassy informed the Polish Post
Office about the receipt of the letter. Despite this there was no reply.
* In May 1989 an international delegation of Macedonians from Australia,
Canada and Greece presented the problem of the Macedonian national minority
in Greece to the Centre for Human Rights in Geneva. They also met with
representatives of the European Parliament in Strasbourg.
* On June 22, 1989 the Helsinki Committee in Poland addressed an appeal
to the state cosignatories to the CSCE Final Act concerning the situation
of Macedonians in Greece.
* In summer 1989 the New York Times printed an article entitled Macedonians
are not Greeks.
* Between June 26 and 30, 1989 at Columbia University in New York, Greeks
held a symposium entitled History, Culture and the Art of Macedonia. The
purpose of the symposium was to convince American society that Macedonia
is Greek. The symposium occasioned strong protests from Macedonians in
the United States and Canada.
* In the summer of 1989 the Atika, the Munich?Athens?Munich express train
serviced by Greeks would not take ? despite available places ? passengers
from Skopje, capital of the Republic of Macedonia.
* In June 1989, the prime minister A Papandreou said at a pre?election
meeting in the Macedonian locality of Lerin (Florina in Greek) that if
he won the election he would build a factory in which only the locals
(that is how he described the Macedonians) would be employed.
He also said that he would abolish law 1540. This law was issued during
his own rule and of his own initiative in 1985 and deprived the Macedonian
refugees of the right to the property they had left behind in Greece.
* In July 1989 the Athens Information Agency issued a leaflet in English
entitled The So Called Macedonian Problem. This leaflet denies the existence
of a Macedonian minority in Greece.
* At a rally in Salonika on July 29, 1989 President Sardzetakis said "Macedonia
was, is and will always be Greek."
* After parliamentary elections in 1989 thousands of leaflets were found
in the ballot boxes in the area of Macedonia in Northern Greece which
contained protests against the disregard for human rights in Greece.
* On August 30, 1989 a legal Act rehabilitating the participants in the
Greek Civil War of 1946?49 was issued. The Act granted damages and disability
pensions to fighters in the civil war who now have Greek citizenship.
By this measure the Macedonian fighters living in exile ? who earlier
had been stripped of their citizenship ? were rendered ineligible.
* In September 1989 the Athenian newspaper Avriani wrote that the demands
of some members of parliament for the abolition in Greek law of the term
"Greek by origin" creates a serious threat to the national unity and territorial
sovereignty of Greece.
The newspaper also wrote that the "second group" of refugees i.e. Macedonian
refugees as opposed to refugees of Greek origin, could return to Greece
under the condition that they unambiguously declare their Greek origin,
i.e deny their Macedonian ethnicity.
* In September 1989 the Ta Maglena newspaper asked "Why are the Macedonians
discriminated against?" The newspaper also asked "Why does Greece not
observe international legal acts?" At the same time it warned Macedonians
against the agents of the Greek Security Service whose number in Macedonian
localities is unimaginable.
* In November 1989 the Sholiastis monthly published an interview with
several members of the illegal Movement for Human and National Rights
for Macedonians of Aegean Macedonia.
* In December 1989, during a period when there was public discussion about
the Macedonian problem, the Greek press warned "The enemy is at the door."
* On January 29, 1990 The Times newspaper published an ethnographic map
of Europe which shows that Macedonians are living in Greece, Bulgaria,
Albania and the Republic of Macedonia.
* In February 1990 The Guardian newspaper wrote "the Macedonian problem
is knocking on the door of Europe. It must be solved before the Balkans
join the united Europe."
* In 1990 a feature film entitled Macedonia was made in Sweden. It is
a six part TV series and presents the homeless and wandering lot of the
* On February 21, 1990 Constantinos Mitsotakis, then leader of the New
Democracy party, said at a press conference in the town of Janina that
he is increasingly convinced that the Greek policy in relation to national
minorities should be more aggressive. He said "We have nothing to fear.
We are clean because Greece is the only Balkan country without the problem
of national minorities." He added "The Macedonian minority does not exist,
neither is it recognized by international agreements."
* On March 7, 1990 Nocolau Martis, former Minister for Northern Greece,
declared that the Macedonian nation is an invention of the Communist party
* On March 25, 1990 in a television address, President Sardzetakis said
"Only native Greeks live in Greece."
* The Greek government warned the former Yugoslavia that should it not
stop discussing the problem of the "so called Macedonian national minority"
Greece will not render it support in cooperating with and eventually joining
* In 1990 the High Court of Florina under decision 19/33/3/1990 refused
to register a Centre for Macedonian Culture. An appeal on August 9 the
same year against the decision was also refused. In May 1991 a second
appeal was refused by the High Court of Appeals in Thessaloniki. In June
1991 the Supreme Administrative Council of Greece in Athens dismissed
a further appeal.
* In June 1990 at the Copenhagen Conference on Human Rights (CHD), the
Greek delegation requested that the executive secretary of the conference
remove the Macedonian Human Rights delegation's literature from the non-government
organization's desk. The request was refused.
* Later, two Macedonian human rights campaigners from Aegean Macedonia
who participated in the CHD experienced official State harassment upon
their return to Greece.
One, Hristo Sideropoulos, was transferred through his work to Kefalonia,
several hundred kilometres from his homeplace. The other participant,
Stavros Anastasiadis, was given discriminatory tax penalties and dismissed
from his job.
* On July 20, 1990 at the village of Meliti near Lerin (Florina) a Macedonian
folk festival was broken up by force by Greek authorities and police.
* In its June, 1991 edition the Atlantic Monthly magazine ran an extensive
story detailing many of the atrocities committed in Macedonian during
the Balkan Wars and following the partition of Macedonia.
The author, Robert Kaplan, also said "Greece, for its part, according
to a Greek consular official whom I visited in Skopje, does not permit
anyone with a "Slavic" name who was born in northern Greece and now lives
in Yugoslav Macedonia to visit Greece, even if he or she has relatives
there. This means that many families have been separated for decades."
* On December 10, 1991 the Greek Central Committee of the Australian Labor
Party in Victoria sent a letter addressed to all Victorian Labor Federal
parliamentarians and all State Labor parliamentarians. The letter explicitly
denies the existence of a Macedonian minority in Greece. Point 4 refers
to "Misinformation claiming that an ethnic "minority" of Macedonians in
Greece is being denied its cultural rights. Greece has no ethnic minority
other than a Moslem religious minority." (Appendix 6)
* In January, 1992, six members of the OAKKE anti-nationalist group were
condemned to 6 and a half months imprisonment for putting up posters for
the recognition of Macedonia.
* In February, 1992 the Guardian newspaper published an article about
the town of Florina in Greece and the struggle of its Macedonian inhabitants
to maintain their identity in the face of Greek repression.
* On March 12, 1992 the Canberra Times ran an article, What's in a Name?
For Greeks a Great Deal, by Peter Hill, the author of the section Macedonians
in the official Australian Bicentenary encyclopedia the Australian People.
The article affirmed the existence of a large Macedonian minority in Greece
and the existence of official discrimination and the denial of human rights.
Mr Hill said "The claim by the Greek Republic that their part of Macedonia
has "one of the most homogenous populations in the world (98.5 per cent
Greek)" is quite absurd. In fact, some parts of it, such as the county
of Florina (Lerin), do not have any indigenous Greek inhabitants at all."
* In March, 1992 the organizers of the Moomba Festival in Melbourne asked
the Macedonian community participants not to use the name Macedonia on
its float after representations were made to the Moomba organizers by
the Greek lobby in Australia and by the Victorian Minister for Ethnic
Affairs. The Macedonians refused. The ministry later said that threats
to the Macedonians' safety had been received.
* On April 2, 1992 the Ambassador of Greece to Australia, VS Zafiropoulos,
wrote a letter to the Canberra Times newspaper in which he said "Macedonia,
Greece's most northerly province, does not contain "a significant minority
who are ethnically related to the Slavs across the border"."
"In fact, Greece has the most homogenous country in Europe and if a small
number of Greeks on the border speak, beside Greek, a Slavic idiom, this
bilingualism does not constitute a minority."
* In May, 1992 Australian journalist Richard Farmer visited Aegean Macedonia
and published an article in the Sunday Telegraph, Sydney entitled Freedom
Fragile in Macedonia. The article described numerous examples of human
rights abuses witnessed by Farmer, including the jamming by Greek authorities
of Easter services broadcast in the Macedonian language from the Republic
of Macedonia and listened to by Macedonians in Greece.
The Greek lobby in Australia subsequently took Farmer to the Press Council
but were unable to deny him his right to publish.
* In July, 1992 the Archimandrite Nikodemos Tsarknias, a priest with the
Greek Orthodox Church and a well known Macedonian human rights campaigner,
and a parishioner, Photios Tzelepis, were issued with a Writ of Summons
to appear in the Magistrate's Court of Thessaloniki. The priest was charged
with insulting his Archbishop. He is also accused of being a homosexual
and a Skopjan (Republic of Macedonia) spy.
However, a KYP (Greek Secret Service) report published in a Greek newspaper
revealed that the minor charge in the Summons was a pretext to harass
the priest for his human rights activism. The report says the authorities
"did not find the courage to say that they kicked him out of the church
for his antihellenic stance and to ask for his committal to trial for
high treason but instead they removed him with the lukewarm "justification"
which we reveal today so that it will stain with shame all those who contributed
The priest's trial is set for April 1994.
* In July 1992 the Macedonian Human Rights Association of Newcastle (Australia)
published the book The Real Macedonians by Dr John Shea, an Irish academic
at Newcastle University. The book gives a great number of reference sources
about the ethnicity of the Macedonian people, the partition of Macedonia,
the ethnic cleansing and repopulation of Aegean Macedonia, and the Greek
Civil War. Chapter 13 is titled Denial Of Human Rights For Macedonian
* On August 15, 1992 The Spectator magazine published an article, The
New Bully of the Balkans, by Noel Malcolm. The article discusses the plight
of the main ethnic minorities in Greece including the Macedonians, the
Vlachs, and the Turks.
On the Macedonians, Mr Malcolm asks "How many of these Slavs still live
in Greece is not known. The 1940 census registered 85,000 'Slav-speakers'.
The 1951 census (the last to record any figures for speakers of other
languages) put it at 41,000; many who had fought on the losing side in
the civil war had fled, but other evidence shows that all the censuses
heavily underestimate the Slav's numbers. The lack of a question on the
census-form is not, however, the only reason for their obscurity."
Mr Malcolm says "One group of these Slavs has started a small monthly
newsletter, with an estimated readership of 10,000. But they have great
difficulty finding a printer (even though it is in Greek), and they say
that if copies are sent through the post they tend to 'disappear'. "Even
if we find a sympathetic printer," one told me, "he's usually too scared
to take the work: he's afraid of losing his other contracts, or perhaps
of getting bricks through his window"."
* In 1992 a spokesman for the Pan Macedonian Association of Victoria,
a Greek organization, was interviewed on SBS television. The spokesman
said that there are no Macedonians in Florina. This was a direct lie as
Florina (formerly Lerin in Macedonian) is well known to have an almost
exclusively Macedonian population. In fact a large number of Macedonian
immigrants now living in Melbourne and Perth are from Florina. This organization
has on other occasions made similar claims on SBS television.
* In November, 1992 Amnesty International published a report entitled
Greece: Violations of the Right to Freedom of Expression. This gave details
on a number of human rights abuses by Greece including the repression
of the Macedonian human rights campaigners, Hristos Sideropoulos and Tasos
* In November, 1992 Pollitecon Publications of Sydney published the book
What Europe Has Forgotten: The Struggle Of The Aegean Macedonians. The
book was written by the Association of Macedonians in Poland and was one
of the first English language books to detail human rights abuses against
Macedonians in Greece.
* On December 5, 1992 The Sydney Morning Herald published an article titled
The Balkan Dance of Death by Bob Beale. Mr Beale says "Greece's record
of dealing with its Greek Macedonian minority is poor. A specialist in
Balkan ethnic minorities, Hugh Poulton, has noted that in the wake of
the bitter civil war - during and after World War 11 - Greece actively
sought to remove Slav Macedonians from its north as "undesirable aliens"."
"At various times since, it has forbidden Greek Macedonians from using
the Slavonic forms of their names, removed them from official posts in
Greek Macedonia and suppressed their language - measures that led many
to emigrate to places like Australia."
* In January, 1993 Amnesty International published another report - Greece:
Violations of the Right to Freedom of Expression: Further Cases of Concern.
This report detailed the case of Michail Papadakis, a 17 year old school
boy who had been arrested on December 10, 1992 for handing out a leaflet
that said "Don't be consumed by nationalism. Alexander the Great: war
criminal. Macedonia belongs to its people. There are no races; we are
all of mixed descent."
* In January, 1993 the Macedonian Movement for Prosperity in the Balkans
held its first congress, in Sobotsko, Greece. The MMPB issued a statement
highlighting Greece's discriminatory policy towards its Macedonian minority
and in particular the denial of basic human rights.
The MMPB said ethnic Macedonians in Greece and Macedonians in the diaspora
should cooperate closely to further ethnic, religious, linguistic and
social freedoms for all minorities in Greece. The organization urged the
Greek government to allow Macedonian political and economic refugees to
return to Greece if they desired.
* In February 1993 a meeting was held between the Macedonian Forum for
Human Rights and the Greek Balkan Citizens' Movement to open up dialog
to help solve existing problems between the two countries.
* In February, 1993, president of the Republic of Macedonia, Kiro Gligorov,
speaking at the United Nations on the possible admission of Macedonia
to the body, criticized Greece for its treatment of its Macedonian minority.
Mr Gligorov said "It is surprising that the Republic of Greece disputes
article 49 of our Constitution which refers to the care of the Republic
of Macedonia for our minority in the neighbouring countries. It should
be pointed out that there is a similar provision in the Greek constitution.
It is a well known fact that the Republic of Greece does not admit the
existence of a Macedonian minority there. From this derive the following
"A. If such a minority does not exist in the Republic of Greece, then
this article does not refer to this country and their reactions are surprising."
"B. If such a minority does exist, which is indisputable, why does Greece
not fulfil at least the basic rights of this minority provided in the
UN Charter, the Helsinki Document, the Charter of Paris, etc of which
it is a signatory party."
"C. "Most important of all, is this the reason that the Republic of Greece
opposes the recognition of the Republic of Macedonia under its constitutional
* In March 1993, the Archimandite Nikodemos Tsarknias was defrocked and
expelled from the Greek Orthodox Church for his human rights activism.
* On March 26, 1993, five members of the OSE organization were put on
trial for publishing and distributing a pamphlet entitled Crisis in the
Balkans: the Macedonian Question and the Working Class. They were charged
with exposing the friendly relations of Greece with foreign countries
to risk of disturbance; spreading false information and rumours that might
cause anxiety and fear to citizens; and inciting citizens to rivalry and
division leading to disturbance of the peace.
* On April 1, 1993 Macedonian human rights campaigners Hristos Sideropoulos
and Tasos Boulis were put on trial after their comments about the existence
of the Macedonian minority were published in ENA magazine in March 1992.
They were charged with spreading false information and rumours that might
cause anxiety and fear to the citizens. They were sentenced to five months
The World Macedonian Congress said that the defence counsel was not allowed
to present its views. An appeal was launched to the higher court in Athens.
* In April, 1993 the Macedonian Information Centre in Perth republished
the booklet the ABECEDAR, originally published by the Greek government
in 1925 as a teaching aid for Macedonian children, but which was never
* In April, 1993 the Belgian press was quoted as saying that Greece was
quickly losing its democratic reputation. The press was quoted as saying
that "Greece, undermining the European principles of respecting basic
human rights, is placing itself at the margins of Europe."
* In May, 1993 the Macedonian Movement for Balkan Prosperity, based in
Arideja, Greece, said that it wanted to participate in the Macedonian-Greek
dialog underway under the auspices of the United Nations to settle the
issue of the name of the Republic of Macedonia. The Movement said the
participation of the Macedonians in Greece was imperative and that it
was time to determine the status of the Macedonians in Greece as well
as those forced to leave during the Greek Civil War.
The Situation in Australia
There are a number of aspects about the position of Aegean Macedonians
in Australia and of the activities of the Greek lobby in Australia that
are cause for concern.
These concerns are fourfold in regard to:
* The Australian Bureau of Statistics Census.
* The influence of the Greek lobby on the Federal Government and parliamentarians.
* The Greek influence in multicultural organizations such as SBS.
* General harassment of the Macedonian community in Australia by the Greek
The Association is concerned that the treatment of Aegean Macedonians
in the Census grossly underestimates the number of total Macedonians in
Australia, with profound political and social consequences.
The under-estimation is partly caused by the lack of an Australian Bureau
of Statistics' country code for Macedonia.
This means that the true number of Macedonians in Australia is not known,
as Macedonians from the Republic of Macedonia have previously been counted
as Yugoslavians and Macedonians from Greece have been counted as Greeks.
To this day, the ABS cannot say with any accuracy how many Macedonians
there are in Australia. Nor can it say how many Aegean Macedonians there
In addition, the lack of a country code denies Aegean Macedonians and
Macedonians from the Republic of Macedonia of the human right to be classified
under the nationality with which they self identify.
A second reason for the under-estimation lies with the questions on Birthplace
and Birthplace of Parents. One's country of birth does not necessarily
indicate one's ethnic origin and identity, and this is the case with the
Many of the Association's members were born in Macedonia but in a region
that has since become a part of Greece. Nonetheless, their ethnic identity
is Macedonian, not Greek, and they deeply resent the fact that if they
answer the Birthplace question they will be classified as Greek.
Likewise, first and second generation Australians of Aegean Macedonian
background resent the fact that if they answer the Birthplace of Parents
question they will be identified as Greek rather than Macedonian origin.
The lack of a country code for Macedonia and the lack of a method for
distinguishing Aegean Macedonians from Greeks in previous Censuses has
had, and continues to have, devastating political consequences for Aegean
Macedonians in Australia. The effect is to increase the apparent number
of Greeks in Australia and reduce the apparent number of Macedonians in
Australia. This has allowed the Greek lobby in Australia to use past Census
figures indicating a large Greek population and a smaller Macedonian population
to exert political influence over Australia's federal parliamentarians.
This influence has often been to the detriment of the Macedonian and Aegean
Macedonian communities in this country.
Although the Macedonian community is one of the largest in Australia,
the lack of credible ABS data means it is unable to prove its size, with
a consequent loss of political and social influence.
The consequences have included:
* The dissemination of inaccurate Greek and Macedonian population figures
* The fact that the Australian Bureau of Statistics has yet to classify
the Republic of Macedonia as a separate country with its own country code.
* The delay of recognition of the Republic of Macedonia by the Australian
government. The Greek government's foreign policy on this issue has been
vigorously adopted by the Greek community in Australia, and has lead to
the Australian government adopting a policy on the issue consistent with
Greek government policy.
* The over provision of Greek language and other ethnic services and the
under provision of Macedonian language and other services.
* Under-representation of Macedonians in the area of broadcasting time
on SBS television. An examination of SBS annual reports over the past
five years shows that the station broadcasts around 160 hours per year
of Greek language programs compared with 2 and three quarter hours per
year of Macedonian language programs. Such a discrepancy would be unbelievable,
were it not happening year after year.
The Aegean Macedonian community of Australia would like to see an investigation
of SBS. The enquiry should focus on the SBS staff and their ethnic backgrounds
to determine if any groups are disproportionately represented. This is
necessary if the human rights of groups oppressed outside of Australia
are to be protected inside Australia.
* There are many other examples that illustrate the suppression of Macedonian
identity in Australia.
In 1992, for example, the participants in the Macedonian float in the
Moomba festival were asked by the promoters, after Greek lobbying, not
the use the name Macedonia on their float. The organizers later admitted
that members of the Greek community had threatened the Macedonians with
violence. Most Macedonians living in Melbourne are from Aegean Macedonia.
Another example is the existence of the Pan Macedonian Association of
Victoria, a Greek organization that claims there is no Macedonian minority
in Greece. This organization has on occasion made this claim on SBS television.
* The requirement that imported foodstuffs from the Republic of Macedonia
have stickers placed on each item to cover the "Product of Macedonia"
* Inclusion by Telecom of the Republic of Macedonia under the heading
of Yugoslavia although Macedonia has been independent since 1991 and every
other country of former Yugoslavia is listed under its own heading.
* There are many other examples.
The Association believes that Aegean Macedonians in Australia should have
the human right to identify themselves by their own self perceived nationality,
and not by the constrictions of a Census form.
The Association has proposed to the Australian Bureau of Statistics that
the 1996 Census should contain a method for allowing Aegean Macedonians
to identify as Macedonian in origin and thus be distinguished from Greeks.
Our suggestion is that the Place of Birth question be followed with a
supplementary question along the lines of "If your ethnic origin is different
from your country of birth, please state your ethnic origin." This approach
has several advantages over a general ancestry question as only a proportion
of people will need to answer it, streamlining processing time and costs
as well as improving accuracy.
Aegean Macedonians can then distinguish themselves from Greeks, Kurds
can distinguish themselves from Turks, Basques can distinguish themselves
from Spaniards and the French, Palestinians can distinguish themselves
from Israelis, East Timorese can distinguish themselves from Indonesians,
Tibetans can distinguish themselves from Chinese and so on. Surely this
is fairer as well as more accurate.
This right is particularly important for all of these groups. It is an
intolerable degradation for a conquered people to be unwillingly counted
among their oppressors and thereby add to their oppressor's political
Yet it is an unrecognized fact of Australian life that the first wave
of Macedonian immigrants from Greece during the 1920s were political refugees
and economic refugees fleeing a deliberately undeveloped economy.
A second period of intense repression during and after the Greek Civil
War of 1946-49 saw another wave of immigrants to Australia from Aegean
It is a humiliating degradation for these people to be forced to put Greece
as their country of birth in the knowledge that they will be counted as
Greeks and will add to the power of a Greek lobby that has worked so assiduously
against the interests of the Aegean Macedonians.
It is within the power of the Australian Government to rectify this appalling
The Association requests the Australian government to implement all of
the above mentioned recommendations.
The Aegean Macedonian Association of Australia is pleased to participate
in this important Australian human rights initiative, and trusts that
this submission will clarify the position of Aegean Macedonians in Greece
Aegean Macedonian Association of Australia
Appendix 1: Freedom of Expression: the Case of Hristos Sideropoulos
and Tasos Boulis:
* Hansard extract: speech in the Australian Senate by Senator Sid Spindler.
* The Economist: Greece and Macedonia: Do Not Disagree, an article, August
* Helsinki Watch report: Greece: Free Speech on Trial: Government Stifles
Debate on Macedonia, July 1993.
* Amnesty International: Section on Greece in Amnesty International Annual
* Amnesty International: Worldwatch article: Greece: Government Critics
Face Prison, June 1993.
* Amnesty International: Greece: Violations of the right to freedom of
expression. London, November 1992.
* Translation of the Summons for the Arrest of Hristos Sideropoulos and
* Four newspaper articles.
* Section on Greece from Amnesty International 1993 Annual Report.
Appendix 2: The Case of Archimandrite Nikodemos Tsarknias:
* Statement by the Archimandrite at the October 1993 CSCE Implementation
Meeting on Human Dimension Issues.
* Press release for function organized in Sydney in February 1993.
* Statement by Archimandrite Nikodemos Tsarknias on his sacking and derobing
by the Greek Orthodox Church.
* Translation of Writ of Summons for Archimandrite Nikodemos and Photios
* Translation of a Greek newspaper article containing a "Top Secret" Information
Bulletin from the Greek Secret Service.
* Four newspaper articles.
Appendix 3: The Case of Michael Papadakis:
* Amnesty International: Greece: Violations of the right to freedom of
expression: further cases of concern. London, January 1993.
Appendix 4: The Case of the Macedonian "child refugees":
* Common Decision of the Ministers of Internal Affairs and Public Security
* Application form to enter Greece from Macedonia
* Memorandum to Greek prime minister
* Letter from Greek Department of Citizenship refusing application for
return of citizenship
* Information in connection with the demands for property and other rights
realization of the Yugoslav citizens in the Republic of Greece.
* Declaration by Australian citizens and residents who were child refugees
Appendix 5: The Situation of the Macedonians in Greece
* Manifest For Macedonian Human Rights, by the Movement for Human and
national Rights for the Macedonians of Aegean Macedonia. Salonica, 1984.
* Open letter to elected representatives from Region Pelas
* Title page of confidential report from European Community regarding
Greek application for funding to resettle Greeks in Aegean Macedonia.
* Is the CSCE Really Serious About Human Rights In Europe?, by Macedonian
Human Rights Movement, Europe, Canada, Australia and USA.
* "The Conspiracy Against Macedonia", a report by the Office of Security,
Greek Ministry of Public Order, 1982.
* The Real Macedonians, Chapter 13, Denial of Human Rights: Macedonian
Minorities, by Dr John Shea. Newcastle, Australia, 1992.
* Photograph from The Terror In Aegean Macedonia Under Greek Occupation,
by the Macedonian Cultural and Educational Society of Australia, Perth,
* Map of Greece showing settlement of Greeks from Turkey in Aegean Macedonia
during the 1920s.
* Two translations from the Greek newspaper Stohos
* Extract from Exiles in the Aegean by Australian author Bert Birtles,
* Full Text of (president of Macedonia) Gligorov's Letter to United Nations
(see section 8).
* Letter from European Bureau of Lesser Used Languages and article titled
Multilingualism in Greece from Contact Bulletin
* Newspaper article: An Act of Discrimination
* Various newspaper and magazine articles:
Freedom fragile in Macedonia.
Extract from The Balkan Dance of Death, Sydney Morning Herald, December
OSE five on trial in Greece.
Slav search for identity stirs historic passions.
Letters to The Economist and The Independent. First congress of ethnic
Macedonians in Greece.
Aegean Macedonians want to take part in negotiations.
Second meeting between Macedonian and Greek intellectuals.
Greece: Balkanised. The Economist, April 18, 1993.
The New Bully of the Balkans, The Spectator, August 15, 1992.
Letter, Stamp on Greece, in response to The New Bully of the Balkans.
History's cauldron, The Atlantic Monthly, June 1991.
Exodus from Bosnia: a repeat of the exodus from Aegean Macedonia.
Editorial: Macedonia is Macedonian.
Setting the scene for the third Balkan War.
What's in a name? For Greeks a great deal.
Greek dinosaurs wallowing in deep trouble.
Appendix 6: The Situation in Australia:
* The Sunday Times article: Perth Group In Border Block, July 17, 1988.
* Letter to newspaper by Greek ambassador to Australia denying the existence
of a Macedonian minority in Greece.
* Letter from the Greek Central Committee of the ALP Victoria to all Victorian
Labor federal parliamentarians and all state Labor parliamentarians.
* Various newspaper articles:
Moomba Macedonians threatened, says adviser.
Macedonians angry over pressure on Moomba float.
BHP worker 'harassed' over badge.
Tensions deepen on Macedonia.
Advertisement placed by the Macedonian Community of Victoria.
Appendix 7: (in back flap):
* What Europe Has Forgotten: The Struggle Of The Aegean Macedonians, A
Report by the Association of Macedonians in Poland. Pollitecon Publications,
* Human Rights Abuses Against Macedonians In Greece, a report by the Aegean
Macedonian Association of Australia, July 1993.
* Paper: The Role Of The Greek Communities In The Formulation Of Australian
Foreign Policy: With Particular Reference To Cyprus; by Andrew Theophanous
and Michalis Michael, May 1990.
NOTE: The above mentioned supporting documents are with the Department
of Foreign Affairs and Trade Human Rights Sub-Committee in Canberra