Ceremony in Serbia in Honor of Greek Victims of World War I

An annual memorial ceremony was held in a military cemetery in Pirot, Serbia to honor the memory of Greek victims of the first World War.

The ceremony’s attendees included the Ambassador of Greece, Dimosthenis Stoidis, the Ambassador of Cyprus, Charalampos Chatzisavvas, representatives of the Serbian Government, and descendants of World War I veterans.

In the military cemetery of Pirot are lying 358 Greek officials and riflemans of the 3rd Division of Patras, a member of the operations held by Entente Cordiale during the World War I.

In Autumn, 1918 the 3rd division of Patras entered Pirot, approaching the borders between Serbia and Bulgaria aiming to prevent a potential Bulgarian retaliation. All 358 soldiers have died in the battle field due to adversities.

Katerina Levanti, a Greek woman married to a Serbian man, finally collected in 1923 the soldiers’ ribcage, that have been spread out in several cemeteries around. Since then, the place where Greek soldiers are lying was unanimously declared to be Greek land. Although, this decision taking has never been implemented due to indifference of the Greek country and later due to the alteration of the Bulgarian political status quo.

In 2004, Pirot Municipality renewed his 1924 decision by allocating the military cemetery to the Greek Government, that since then is responsible for the restoration of the cemetary.