46408 - The future of the autonomy of Northern Epirus

N. Lygeros
Translated from the Greek by Athina Kehagias

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Ever since Northern Epirus officially acquired the autonomous status back in 1914, everything changed at a strategic level.
Because it was no longer about a utopian will, but regarding a national vision.
And it’s no coincidence that it quickly acquired national symbols, such as the flag which was issued even upon a postage stamp.
However, the problem is no longer confined to the Greek element, since it gradually obtained larger dimensions.
The Northern Epirotes who could see what the Great Powers wanted, did not formally request annexation to Greece, but a complete autonomy based upon the Swiss model, with one domination and one administration directly from them..
It is for that reason that on May the 17, of 1914, we resulted in the Protocol of Corfu which explains that the provinces of Koritsa and Argirokastron had to be granted a full autonomy status.
Later, the United States of America’s Senate on May the 17, of 1920 recognized Greece’s rights over Northern Epirus under the Secret Pact.
But then later on, Italy recognized the Albanian independence, and the Ambassadors gave Koritsa and Argirokastron to Albania on the 9th of November in 1920.
And we ended up on October 2 in 1921, when Albania accepts the Treaty of the league of Nations, re: the Protection of National Minorities .
But in actual fact, Albania restricted the Greek National Minority to Argirokastron, and Agioi Saranta as well as villages in Himara, and it granted no local autonomy as such.