The Federation of Pontian Associations of Australia (FPAA) held commemorative events last Friday across Sydney, Melbourne, and South Australia to honour the victims of the Greek Genocide.

With a focus on raising awareness and acknowledging the devastating loss of life and opportunities experienced by Pontian Hellenes, the FPAA united its members and invited the broader Australian community to stand together in remembrance.

The newly elected FPAA president, Esta Paschalidis-Chilas, stressed that recognising the Genocide is not about hatred but about acknowledging the pain and healing the intergenerational wounds.

“This year, members of the Federation of Pontian Associations of Australia (FPAA) remembered, respected and reflected on the devastating loss of life and opportunity Pontian Hellenes experienced, Ms Paschalidis-Chilasher said in her first public address, noting that “acknowledging the Genocide, is not about hate. It is about remembering the loss of life, loss of opportunity and deep inter-generational pain caused, pain that is not fully healed”.

At the wreath laying ceremony. Photo: Supplied

“We are especially thrilled at the participation of many young people and children because they are our future and with them, we are thriving,” added the president.

The FPAA expressed gratitude for the recent recognition of the Genocide by the State of Tasmania, achieved through collaboration among the Greek, Armenian, and Assyrian communities, and committed to working towards nationwide recognition.

They invited all Hellenes, the wider Australian community, and political leaders from diverse backgrounds to join them on their journey.

At the The Federation of Pontian Associations of Australia event on 19 May. Photo: Supplied

Akrites Tou Pontou Celebrates Pontian heritage and commemorates the Greek Genocide

Akrites Tou Pontou organised the “Memory of Pontos” event last Sunday to honour both the memory of the Greek Genocide and preserve Pontian heritage.

The day began with a solemn church service at the Axion Esti Monastery in Northcote, followed by a wreath-laying ceremony at the garden Memorial of the Monastery.

Representatives from Akrites Tou Pontou, including the committee and youth members, joined by Onoufrios Gorozidis from the Panagia Soumela Foundation.

Honouring the victims of the genocide. Photo: Supplied

The event also saw the participation of Kinda Haroun from the Assyrian Australian Social Development Club and Bianca Hormis from the Assyrian Cultural Social Youth Association, reflecting the solidarity between the Greek and Assyrian communities.

Panagiotis Stefanidis, the Secretary of the Federation of Pontian Associations of Australia, welcomed the attendees, while Konstantinos Antoniadis, representing the Federation of Pontic Associations of Australia, highlighted the significance of the recent recognition of the Genocide in Tasmania.

Stefania Basdekis and Kinda Haroun shared their personal perspectives on cultural heritage and the strong bonds between Greek and Assyrian communities.

Poems and excerpts from Genocide survivors of the Greek, Armenian, and Assyrian communities were recited, emphasising the shared struggle for recognition in Australia.

Young Akrites tou Pontou at the Memory of Pontos event. Photo: Supplied