Eastern Thrace

From Phantis
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Eastern Thrace is the name used by Greeks to describe the European part of modern-day Turkey. Usually, Istanbul is not included in Eastern Thrace.


The term Eastern Thrace began to be used around the time of the Balkan Wars. In the First Balkan War, Bulgaria occupied Eastern Thrace as far as Catalca (Greek: Tsataltza) before being halted by the Turkish army. During the Second Balkan War, Turkey managed to recoup the territory all the way to the Evros River. After World War I, Eastern Thrace up to Catalca was awarded to Greece by the Treaty of Sevres. It was subdivided into three prefectures: Raidestos, Kallipolis and Saranta Ekklisies. The region's inhabitants got to vote in the Greek elections of 1920 unlike those of Greek-occupied Asia Minor which was considered occupied territory by that same treaty.

In the Greco-Turkish War (1919-1922), the return of Eastern Thrace became one of Kemal Ataturk's demands and may have been the reason the Laiko Komma Greek government reneged on their election pledge to vacate Asia Minor and bring the Greek troops "home". After the Asia Minor Disaster, Greece accepted the Turkish demand and surrendered Eastern Thrace without firing a shot as part of the Treaty of Lausanne. The Greeks of Eastern Thrace became refugees as they were included in the population exchange between the two countries.

Cities and Towns