Extermination in Bafra

The following is from the book “The Greek Pontians of the Black Sea” by the late Constantine Hionides, M.D. , pg 259

 Extermination in Bafra

Gavrielides, A.: Pages of the black national calamity of Pontos. Athens, 1924, page 91.

Expulsion-from-Bafras“First mission (Sefkiat): On June 5,1921, the Greek quarters of Bafra were beseiged by elements of the Turkish authorities, and all males 15 to 70 years old were arrested and imprisoned. These 570 captured Greeks were sent under escort of Topal Osman’s executioners to a location 3 hours away from Bafra. After they were robbed, near St. Haralambos church of the village Kiov Tse Su, they were butchered, except for two who managed to escape to the mountains.

“Second mission: On June 8, 1921, the blood covered beast, Topal Osman, arrested an additional 520 men of all ages. He led them to the Selamelik church of St. George, four hours away from Bafra. There, after they were robbed and slaughtered, their bodies were burned within the church.

“Third mission: On June 11, 1921, 670 more men were arrested and, after a 3 day imprisonment, were sent into exile. On their way, they were humiliated and wildly beaten with whips and guns. Near the village of Bafra, their captors ordered them to take their clothes off. Then most of them were locked in the church, where they burned alive. The rest of them were slaughtered and left naked on the roads to be devoured by wild animals and vultures.

“Fourth mission: During the first mission, 33 young men escaped. These were later caught and sent into exile on June 17,1921. Four of them escaped. The remaining 29, after a horrendous walk, reached Malatya. They escaped death because a new order from Ankara was issued on June 12,1921 to stop executions but to continue the exiles.

“Fifth and sixth missions: The village of Musamli, together with 116 other villages, was destroyed by Topal Osman and the local Turks.

“The inhabitants of these villages, mostly old men and women with children, left and went to Bafra. On September 3,1921, 4,120 were exiled to Malatya. After 70 days of walking in the mountains, towns and villages, only 1270 reached their destination in Malatya. The others had died en route from fatigue, cold, hunger and weakness. But then, of these 1270 survivors, most of them also died from typhus and hunger.

“Seventh mission: On September 21,1921,2,300 more women and children were sent into exile. After a 10 day march, they were robbed. The march then continued and, after 69 days, they arrived in Malatya. Their number had diminished to 800 survivors. About 1500 souls perished. But again, from these 800 who survived most of them were sent to Harput and Diyarbakir and died from typhus.

“Eighth mission: On September 11,1921,1900 people were exiled. When they arrived at the horrible mountain Deli Tas, 310 froze to death and 790 died from disease. The remaining 800 persons later arrived at Hekim Han. Four hundred of them could not even walk because of weakness. The remaining 400 reached Malatya and continued to Harput. After a while, they had the same fate as the others. All of them died.

“Ninth mission: On September 14, 1921, 933 more people were exiled to Malatya, where they had the same fate as the other missions.

“The relocations and exiles of Bafra and Samsun took place during the same period and with the same number of missions, nine from each city. The same means of extermination, starvation, cold, disease and endless marches. All this shows that it was a general order from Ankara, aiming to exterminate all Greeks. This was the tragedy of tortured Bafra.