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The Federation of Pontian Associations sponsors the International Association of Genocide Scholars Conference

"The obligation towards our ill-fated ancestors is ongoing – the effort needs to be continuous"

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07 July 2017

On the initiative of the president of the federation, Peter Papoulidis, the Federation of Pontian Associations of Australia has become a sponsor of the 13th Conference of the International Association of Genocide Scholars, which will take place at the University of Queensland tomorrow Sunday 9 until Thursday 13 July.

Centred on the theme 'Justice and the Prevention of Genocide', the five-day gathering will include 146 papers, along with the screening of 11 films and the presentation of six artistic exhibitions by scholars from 25 countries.

Amongst the papers will be Theodoros Pelekanidis' (Humboldt University of Berlin) 'The Presentation of Genocide in the Age of Postmodernism' and Panayiotis Diamadis' (University of Technology, Sydney) 'Weaving Stories: Genocide in the Australian Curriculum History'.

According to the official statement on the conference's website: "The Federation of Pontian Associations of Australia is the peak body of Australian Hellenes whose ancestors hail from the Pontos (Black Sea coast) region of Anatolia. With branches in Sydney, Wollongong, Melbourne, Canberra, Adelaide and Perth, federation activities on cultural activism and political recognition of the genocide of their ancestors."

"It is a historic initiative of our federation," stated Mr Papoulidis, "an initiative with which we take the issue of the genocide of the Hellenes beyond the boundaries of our community."

Maria Anthony, president of the Pontoxeniteas Brotherhood in Sydney added that "the world is evolving; the global village is a reality. It is not enough to hold certain events in our clubhouses for the Commemoration Day [19 May] and then say 'OK, we have done our part'."

As Nick Chrissostomidi, the president of the Pontian Brotherhood of Wollongong Diogenis and secretary of the Federation noted "The obligation towards our ill-fated ancestors is ongoing – the effort needs to be continuous, as much for the education of the scholars and politicians, as for the awakening of the following generations of Hellenes in the diaspora."

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After a hundred years we should not evade the truth. Most Pontians stayed in Ponto’s after 1922; except those that were Christians and those that took up arms, even against Greek Muslims. Stupid murders and stupid pain, all because the Christians from North Europe came to tell stupid people the way to become the rulers was to kill their Muslim neighbour's. My Grandfather admitted his sin of waving a gun against his Greek Muslim relatives when they were for previous generations like any other family member. The pain induced by the Christians from North Europe continued for most of his life; even to see some of his children forced to leave Greece. Neighbour killing neighbour was the same in Greece as it was in Turkey. Chaos brings pain for everybody. The Greek "Uncle Toms" in Australia should first have the crimes committed by the Christian North Europeans against Greeks recognised while the few witnesses are about, before throwing stones at the Greek Muslims in Pontos. If you dare to ask North Europeans for an answer about their crimes you might find yourself in a very bad situation.
The Promise is a movie that looks at some of this - check out Palace theatres in Clayton, Balwyn and Como and the Sun Theatre in Yarraviletheatrees

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