Erdogan claims Greek soldiers burnt Izmir in 1922

Erdogan claims Greek soldiers burnt Izmir in 1922

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan claimed Greek soldiers burned down the coastal city of Izmir as they were retreating in 1922, at the end of the Greek-Turkish War, as he kicked off his general and presidential election campaign rally in the city on Saturday.

“The biggest blow suffered by this beautiful city was by the Greek soldiers who burned Izmir as they retreated,” he reportedly told a crowd during a speech at Izmir’s Chamber of Commerce, according to broadcaster SKAI.

Erdogan claimed Turkish soldiers “did not want to destroy or burn – they always wanted to build and create,” which is evident by the rapid development of the city after the war.

The fire started on 13 September 1922, four days after the Turkish forces regained control of Izmir, destroying the Greek and Armenian quarters. 

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