Provisional Government of Western Thrace

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Garbi Trakya Hükûmet-i Müstakilesi
Prosorini Kyvernisi Dytikis Thrakis
غربی تراقیا حكومت مستقله‌سی
Προσωρινή Κυβέρνηση Δυτικής Θράκης
Provisional, later Independent


Capital Komotini
Government Provisional Government under a Republic system
President Hoca Salih Efendi
 •  Established August 31, 1913
 •  Disestablished October 25, 1913
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Kingdom of Bulgaria
Kingdom of Bulgaria
¹ Renamed from "Provisional Government of Western Thrace" and some researchers used term of "Republic of Gumuljina" and the "Turkish Republic of Western Thrace".

The Provisional Government of Western Thrace[1][2][3] (Ottoman Turkish: غربی تراقیا حكومت موقته‌سی - Garbi Trakya Hükûmet-i Muvakkatesi, Greek: Προσωρινή Κυβέρνηση Δυτικής Θράκης, Prosorini Kyvernisi Dytikis Thrakis, Turkish: Batı Trakya Geçici Hükûmeti),[4][5] later renamed to Independent Government of Western Thrace[1][6] (Ottoman Turkish: غربی تراقیا حكومت مستقله‌سی - Garbi Trakya Hükûmet-i Müstakilesi, Greek: Αυτόνομη Κυβέρνηση Δυτικής Θράκης, Avtonomi Kyvernisi Dytikis Thrakis), was a small, short-lived partially recognized republic established in Western Thrace from August 31 to October 25, 1913. It encompassed the area surrounded by the rivers Maritsa (Evros) in the east, Mesta (Nestos) in the west, the Rhodope Mountains in the north and the Aegean Sea in the south. Its total territory was c. 8.600 km².[7]

This administration was created after the Second Balkan War when Western Thrace was occupied by the Ottoman Empire after invitation by the local Turks, Greeks and Pomaks. Greece received a similar appeal but did not commit any forces to Thrace. The state was officially recognized by Bulgaria, Greece and the Ottoman Empire during the period.[8]

It was founded as an autonomous state with Ottoman support, in order to avoid Bulgarian rule after the Treaty of Bucharest, in which the Ottomans had not taken part. Under British pressure, the Balkan powers and the Ottomans signed the Treaty of Constantinople, which satisfied the Turkish claims to recognition of Eastern Thrace. The Ottomans withdrew their forces and by 25 October, the area was annexed by Bulgaria.[9] The area remained a part of Bulgaria until 1919 when it was taken under French protectorate. It was finally annexed by Greece in 1920 and has been part of that country ever since, except for the Bulgarian occupation between 1941–1944. Its capital was Gümülcine, now Komotini, in Greece.


President : Hoca Salih Efendi.

Army: Standing force of 29,170, largely infantry. Commander of the Armed Forces [10][page needed] was Süleyman Askerî Bey.

Steering Committee : Reshid Bey, Raif Effendi, Hafous Salih Effendi, Nicodimos (commissioner of the Diocese of Maroneia, representing the Greeks), Mikirditch Tabakian (Armenian), Yaka Cassavi (Jew), Hafous Galip and Eshref Bey Kushchubasi.[11]

As soon as independence was declared the Provisional Government of Western Thrace determined the borders of the country, put up the new flags on the official buildings, commissioned a national anthem, raised an army, published its own stamps [12] and passports[10][page needed], and prepared the budget of the new country.

A Jewish citizen, Samuel Karaso, was tasked by the government with establishing an official press agency and to publish a newspaper named Müstakil ("Independent") in Turkish and French. The Ottoman Laws and Regulations were adopted without any change and the cases started to be heard by the Court of Western Thrace.

Currency 40 Paras = 1 Piaster [12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b International Affairs Agency Turkish Dossier Program, The Western Thrace Turks issue in Turkish-Greek relations, International Affairs Agency, 1992, p. 105.
  2. ^ Philip Hendrick Stoddard, The Ottoman government and the Arabs, 1911 to 1918: a preliminary study of the Teskilât-ı Mahsusa, Princeton University, 1963, pp. 52-53.
  3. ^ Andrew Mango, Atatürk: The Biography of the Founder of Modern Turkey, Overlook Press, 2002, ISBN 978-1-58567-334-6, p. 102.
  4. ^ Belgeselin bu bölümünde Batı Trakya Geçici Hükümeti konu ediliyor (Metin Edirneli Rodop Hükumetleri ile ilgili olarak, TRT)
  5. ^ Türkkaya Ataöv, Çatışmaların kaynağı olarak ayrımcılık, A.Ü. S.B.F. İnsan Hakları Merkezi Yayınları, Ankara, 1996
  6. ^ Mesut Uyar, Edward J. Erickson, A military history of the Ottomans: from Osman to Atatürk, ABC-CLIO, 2009, ISBN 978-0-275-98876-0, p. 259.
  7. ^ "Panayotis D. Cangelaris – The Western Thrace Autonomous Government "Muhtariyet" Issue (1913) Philatelic Exhibit". Retrieved 2016-09-25. 
  8. ^ Koçak, Yalçın; Özyiğit, Ertan (2014). Batı Trakya Türk Cumhuriyeti – 100. Yıl Anısına (Western Thrace Turkish Republic – In Commemoration of the 100th Anniversary). WizArt. ISBN 9786056466717. 
  9. ^ Constantinos Vacalopoulos (2004). Ιστορία της Μείζονος Θράκης, από την πρώιμη Οθωμανοκρατία μέχρι τις μέρες μας, History of Greater Thrace, from early Ottoman rule until nowadays. Thessaloniki: Publisher Antonios Stamoulis. p. 282. ISBN 960-8353-45-9. 
  10. ^ a b Çeçen, Anıl, Tarihte Türk Devletleri, Milliyet Kültür Yayınları, İstanbul 1986
  11. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-10-29. Retrieved 2013-10-27. 
  12. ^ a b "Western Thrace, Autonomous Government (1913) » Dead Country Stamps and Banknotes". Retrieved 2016-09-25. 

External links[edit]