Oh no! Not another one! 😦 Who’s responsible for this one?
Meskhetian Turks living in the United States commemorated their 72 years of exile from their then-Soviet homeland Georgia in front of the White House on Nov. 12. Aydın Memedov, the head of the Ahiska Turkish American Council, an umbrella organization representing Meskhetian Turkish American organizations in the U.S., said the commemoration was a way to remember his ancestors who were exiled to nine different countries.
Memedov added that the group sent a letter to Congress explaining the circumstances their ancestors suffered, including people who were deported in railcars.
Meskhetian Turks, also known as Ahiska Turks, were expelled in 1944 from the Meskheti region in Georgia by the Soviet leader Joseph Stalin, in an attempt to remove Turks from the shores of the Black Sea. The group faced discrimination and human rights abuses before and after the deportation. Those who migrated to Ukraine in 1990 settled in shanty towns used by seasonal workers.
The majority of the Meskhetian Turks in Ukraine fled their homes during the 2014 conflict between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine.