Official: Haiti to be honored for contribution to Greek independence
Greece will honor Haiti for being the first nation in the world to recognize Greek independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1821.
The country’s Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias announced recently that he will pay an official visit to Haiti in gratitude.
In a Tweet published on Monday, the Greek Foreign Minister said that the visit came about as a proposal put forth by MP Constantinos Bogdanos and Athanasios Papadopoulos, the mayor of Kalavryta.
Dendias stated that the Greek Foreign Ministry is “already planning a series of relevant actions” to “honor Haiti.”
Haiti’s recognition was made through a powerful letter by President Jean-Pierre Boyer to renowned Greek scholar Adamantios Korais, dated 15 January 1822.
Boyer’s letter in full:
“Before I received your letter from Paris, dated last August 20, the news about the revolution of your co-citizens against the despotism which lasted for about three centuries had already arrived here.
“With great enthusiasm we learned that Hellas was finally forced to take up arms in order to gain her freedom and the position that she once held among the nations of the world.
“Such a beautiful and just case, most importantly, the first successes which have accompanied it, cannot leave Haitians indifferent, for we, like the Hellenes, were for a long time subjected to a dishonorable slavery and finally, with our own chains, broke the head of tyranny.
“Wishing to the Heavens to protect the descendants of Leonidas, we thought to assist these brave warriors, if not with military forces and ammunition, at least with money, which will be useful for acquisition of guns, which you need.
“But events that have occurred and imposed financial restrictions onto our country absorbed the entire budget, including the part that could be disposed by our administration.
“Moreover, at present, the revolution which triumphs on the eastern portion of our island is creating a new obstacle in carrying out our aim; in fact, this portion, which was incorporated into the Republic I preside over, is in extreme poverty and thus justifies immense expenditures of our budget.
“If the circumstances, as we wish, improve again, then we shall honorably assist you, the sons of Hellas, to the best of our abilities.
“Citizens! Convey to your co-patriots the warm wishes that the people of Haiti send on the behalf of your liberation.
“The descendants of ancient Hellenes look forward, in the reawakening of their history, to trophies worthy of Salamis.
“May they prove to be like their ancestors and guided by the commands of Miltiades, and be able, in the fields of a new Marathon, to achieve the triumph of the holy affair that they have undertaken on behalf of their rights, religion and motherland.
“May it be, at last, through their wise decisions, that they will be commemorated by history as the heirs of the endurance and virtues of their ancestors.
“(Signed) In the 15th of January 1822 and the 19th year of Independence, Boyer.