March 25 is celebrated by Greeks as their national day, and marks the beginning of the Greek rebellion against the Ottoman Empire in 1821.
The day also marks the beginning of the murder of over 25,000 Ottoman Muslims of Greece, which would set a pattern for other nationalist revolts in the Balkans, and the subsequent ethnic and religious motivated slaughter and forced mass migration of over ten million Ottoman citizens that would last for 100 years.
The Greek Revolution began with the murder of Ottoman government officials and was followed with a general attack on the Turks of the Morea in southern Greece, in which Greek guerrillas and villagers simply murdered every Turk in the region. Jews, perceived as infidels by the Greeks were killed as readily as were Muslims. Inhabitants of whole Turkish towns were rounded up and marched out to slaughter. The Greek Church was not aside from the rampage and expressed its patriotism for the revolution with the cry by Archbishop Germanos being “Peace to the Christians! Respect to the Consuls! Death to the Turks!” The deaths of Turks in Greece were not the mortality of wartime casualties. All the Turks taken by Greek bands, including women and children, were killed and entire Turkish populations of cities and towns were collected and slaughtered.
From March 1821 up to the summer of 1822, the Greek rebellion had cost the lives of more than 50,000 Turks, Greeks, Albanians, Jews and others. Many more were forced to live in slavery and deprivation. When the European Powers finally forced the Ottomans to create a Greek kingdom in the Morea, it was a Greek kingdom devoid of the Turks who had lived there for centuries.
For more information on the ethnic cleansing and massacres in Greece, please visit here. Please also see Forced Migration and Mortality in the Ottoman Empire: An Annotated Map.