Istanbul pogrom commemorated in central venue
ISTANBULA group of representatives from several minority advocate groups gathered on Istanbul’s İstiklal Avenue to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Istanbul pogrom, anti-Greek riots in Sept. 6 and 7 in 1955 that left 15 people dead, many others injured and a large number of Greek homes and buildings looted.
Representatives from the DurDe Platform and the Istanbul Rums Universal Federation, both rights groups fighting to preserve minority rights, gave a press briefing after they held a vigil, waving placards reading “6-7 September: Never Again” as to commemorate the people killed during the riots, the state-run Anadolu Agency reported on Sept. 5.
Fifteen people died, a large number of people were injured, and many homes and workplaces were looted in the Sept. 6 and 7 incidents, said Gonca Şahin, a spokesperson speaking on behalf of the group.
Şahin said the discriminatory attitude towards non-Muslim communities in Turkey has prevailed since the riots in 1955 and that all problems would be solved in Turkey if the country endorsed a domestic policy based on peace, democracy and equality.
Meanwhile, a service was held in the Panagia Greek Orthodox Church in the Yeniköy neighborhood to commemorate the pogrom on Sept. 6.
The Istanbul pogrom was organized mob attacks directed at Istanbul’s non-Muslim residents, primarily its Greek minority, on Sept. 6-7, 1955. The pogrom left more than a dozen people dead and attackers looted a large number of non-Muslim homes and workplaces in Istanbul, which further led to an exodus by a huge number of Turkey’s remaining Greek population.