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Antiochian Greeks are the members of the Greek Orthodox Church of Antioch who have resided in the territory of contemporary Turkish province of Hatay, but many of these members are ethnic Assyrians/Syriacs, who before spoke Syriac and celebrate the Liturgie in Old-Syriac. They are now primarily speakers of Levantine Arabic, but also of Greek and Turkish .

Historically, they were considered as a part of Rûm millet by the Ottoman authorities. The community had a notable tendency of immigration in early 20th century. As the Sanjak of Alexandretta was then a part of Syria, and Greeks were not subject to population exchange of 1923. After Hatay was annexed by Turkey in 1939, many emigrated to Syria and Lebanon. Following 1960s, a new wave of immigration has drawn Antiochian Aramaeans and Greeks to Western countries.

According to a census conducted by the Patriarchate of Antioch in 1895, there were 50,000 Antiochian Greeks in the Sanjak, compared to about 30,000 in the 1930s.[1] In 1995, their total population was estimated at 10,000.[2] Today, a significant number of Antiochian Greeks in Turkey live in Istanbul. They are concentrated in İskenderun, Samandağ, and Altınözü in Hatay. There is also a community in Mersin. A case of intercommunal violence with Muslims in Altınözü was reported in 2005. The events were allegedly sparked by harassment of a Christian girl by a Muslim barber's apprentice.[3]

References

  1. ^ Peter Alford Andrews, Ethnic Groups in the Republic of Turkey, Dr. Ludwig Reichert Verlag, 1989, ISBN 3-89500-297-6
  2. ^ The Greeks of Turkey, 1992-1995 Fact-sheet by Marios D. Dikaiakos
  3. ^ (Turkish) Taciz yüzünden cemaatler dövüştü

See also


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