Although there are various discussions regarding the death toll, about 353,000 Pontos Greeks were murdered by the Committee of Union and Progress officials of the Ottoman Empire between 1914-1918, and later by the order of Mustafa Kemal between 1919-1923. Several genocide scholars and historians refer to it as the pontic genocide. The Greek government officially recognize it as a genocide.
The massacre was instigated by the government of the Ottoman Empire and the Turkish nationalist movement against the indigenous Greek population of the Empire. The Greek’s houses were raided and they were forced onto death marches. Their villages were burned, women were raped and eastern Orthodox cultural, historical, and religious monuments in the region were destroyed.
Later, 1,250,000 Pontos Greeks were forcibly exiled from Anatolia with the “exchange agreement”. Most of the refugees and survivors of the massacre fled to Greece. Some, especially those in Eastern provinces, also took refuge in the neighboring Russian Empire. Those who did not leave their lands were forcibly converted to Islam and Turkified. Their language was banned. The names of cities, towns, and villages were changed, and Turkish names were given instead.
The people of Pontic were subjected to massacres, exile, enslavement, and all the inhumane treatments after Trabzon (a city at the northeast region of Turkey) came under Ottoman rule in 1461.