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Treaty of Sèvres

Kemal Atatürk (1881—1938) Turkish general and statesman, President 1923–38


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Treaty of Lausanne

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(24 July 1923)

A settlement which replaced the earlier Treaty of Sèvres, after the success of Mustafa Kemal (Atatürk) in the Graeco-Turkish War (1921–2). Greece had to surrender Smyrna (Izmir) and eastern Thrace, including Adrianople (Edirne). Kurdistan lost its autonomy, while Turkey's reconquest of Armenia was confirmed. In return for these gains, Turkey accepted that Palestine and Syria were to be mandated to Britain and France. Italy was confirmed in the Dodecanese and Britain in Cyprus. The Aegean islands except Imbros and Tenedos remained under Greek sovereignty. The Dardanelles remained demilitarized and open to shipping, as supervised by a League of Nations Commission. This final settlement of the Turkish-Greek border resulted in a large refugee crisis, as over one million Greeks were forced to leave Turkey (mainly from Smyrna), while some 350,000 Turks were forced to leave Greece. It has remained the basis of Graeco-Turkish tensions ever since.

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