The purpose and mission of the
Macedonian Educative and Cultural Movement of Voden and its first Cultural
Center of Voden includes:
A) Preserving and promoting Human Rights
for the Macedonians in Greece, organizing meetings at the premises in order to
inform Macedonians about their rights and how to claim those rights.
B) Preserving and promoting our
ancestral inherited Macedonian language by organizing language classes, as well
as promoting and encouraging the use of our language in our everyday life
among people who speak Macedonian as their
C) Housing a library with a collection
of historical documents and organizing educational seminars on a variety of
D) Promoting and preserving our
traditions, culture, values and principles by organizing thematic meetings, exhibitions
or presentations, including old photographic materials and other artifacts
relevant to various expressions of local traditions. These would include
documenting traditional local recipes, songs, fairy tales, proverbs, and customs
related to the social life of local Macedonian communities.
The members of the Macedonian Education and Cultural Movement of Voden would like to express their appreciation and gratitude to all our friends that helped financially so this project could be brought forward and realized.
We are all ready for new activities and new challenges that will help our Macedonian heritage and identity to be passed on to the new generations of Macedonians in Aegean Macedonia. This is our main aim and purpose!
We still have a
lot of work to do because the enormous damage done in the past to the Macedonian
community in Greece, including ultra-nationalistic anti-Macedonian policies by
the Greek state. We, the members of the MECM of Voden, are very positive that
we will succeed in our aim!
The existence of a place that would house the activities of the "Macedonian Education and Cultural Movement of Edessa" was imperative. The goal we have set recently is to create new activities that require a place that will be a cultural center.
At the Congress of the "Pan-Slavic Union", Father Nicodemus
Tsarknias, priest of the house of prayer Sveta Zlata Meglenska in Aridea, was also
been invited and participated as a delegate.
The conference lasted for 8 days and took place on the ship "Princess Anastasia", which runs cruises on the Volga River, from Moscow to St. Petersburg, with stops on the way to various impressive historical and religious sites.
The conference was attended by more than 200 delegates from many European Slavic countries and there was a friendly and enthusiastic atmosphere - especially in the Youth section - during which the main theme was the union and cooperation of all Slavic peoples and the effort to explore all those elements, beyond our own languages, that unite us (traditions, history, culture, etc.).
It was a wonderful new contact that we hope will help everyone in the future for collaborations.
Below you can read the final conclusions of the Pan-Slavic Conference as translated from Russian into English.
MAIN RESULTS OF THE JUBILEE PAN-SLAVIC CONGRESS
26/05/17 - 03/06/17
Moscow - St. Petersburg
(Appeal of the Presidents of the Anniversary Pan-Slavic Congress to the leaders of the Slavic states and Slavic non-governmental organizations)
From May 26 to June 3, 2017, Moscow and St. Petersburg hosted the Jubilee of the Pan-Slavic Congress, attended by over 220 delegates from all Slavic countries. The first plenary session of the Congress took place near the Kremlin walls in the Russian State Library's event hall. Further works of the conference continued on the ship "Princess Anastasia" on the route Uglich - Yaroslavl - Kirilov - Kizhi - Svirstroy - Valaam - St Petersburg. 14 conferences and roundtables were held in the conference, in which more than 300 documents, speeches, exhibitions and presentations were presented:
• Conference "Slavic culture and in particular Slavic ideology"
• Conference "Slavic Enlightenment" Conference
• Conference "Up-to-date topics of Slav history"
• Conference "Slavic State, Law, Geopolitics"
• Conference "Slavism and the West"
• Conference "Towards Slavic Unity and Reciprocity. Slavic Federation. Russian Unity "
• Round table "Slavic agriculture and economic relations"
• Conference "Slavic Literature and Journalism"
• Round table "Slavic painting, sculpture, architecture"
• Conference "Slavic music, theater, cinema"
• Round table "Slavic youth"
• Round table "Destructive forces in Slavic history"
• Round Table "Slavic Encyclopedia"
• Conference "Organization of Slavic Movement"
At the Congress they met to celebrate a remarkable event in the history of the world movement of Slavic peoples - the Slavic Congress of 1867 in Moscow. The delegates pointed out that the 1867 conference was held under the slogan of the great love of the Slavic peoples among them and toward Russia. The main result of the conference was the spiritual unification of the Slavic peoples, which developed a common ideology of the world movement of the Slavic peoples for spiritual unity and reciprocity. At the congress of 1867 it was proclaimed that the Slavic peoples were appointed by God a special mission, the concept of Slavic civilization in all its manifestations. The history of the Slavic peoples contains their historical call to this mission, to the historical struggle of the Slavic peoples to fight the world's evil forces, which are mainly incorporated into the German-Roman civilization. To the Slavic peoples, the conference participants claimed, in a special way. Their global challenge is to free mankind from unilateral and false development, which has accepted history under the influence of German-Roman Western civilization.
The ideas and ideals of the Slavic peoples, under discussion in the Congress in 1867, identified the main parameters of Slavic ideology. Some of them have been updated and incorporated into the life of Slavic peoples.
Speakers at the conference stressed that the West continues to see the Slavic world as an object of exploitation and economic expansion. The overwhelming majority of the economic and natural resources of the Slavic states included in the European Union and NATO are under the full control of western financial institutions and businesses. Under the influence of this control, the national economy of the Slavic countries is downgraded and the most advanced enterprises have passed into the hands of German-Roman owners. Today, the European Union is the main form of exploitation of the Slavic peoples. About 110 million people of Slavic nations (including Ukraine) are under the yoke and dependence of the Union (German-Roman dictation).
Based on the ideas of the 1867 Congress, the delegates of the Jubilee Pan-Slavic Congress are opposed to the division and seduction from the West of the original Slavic civilization - one of the foundations of a multipolar world, to preserve eternal traditions and ethic values.
The preservation and transmission to future generations of traditional Slavic values and ideals: intellectual integrity, calophylia, collegiality, non-greed, respect for Slavic unity and reciprocity.
For 150 years after the Slavic Congress of Moscow, the Slavic world has experienced lots of unrest. The most bloody battle was with Nazi Germany during the Second World War. Of its 50 million victims, 35.3 million fall into the Slavic countries. At the expense of unimaginable suffering, the ancient border between Germany and the Slavic world in the Labe / Elbe that was secured by a handshake of US and Soviet soldiers in 1945, was restored. As a result of the victory in World War II, the eternal dream of the Slavic Union acquired a real shape. The Warsaw Pact, the Mutual Economic Assistance Council were set up to promote the political, economic and cultural integration of Slavic peoples.
However, Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia were destroyed by the leaders of the Soviet Union and other Slavic countries at the end of the twentieth century, as a result of the treachery of the Slavic world's interests, and by a new attack of German culture against the Slavic world .
As a result of the West's violations of all post-war settlement arrangements, the borders of the European Union and the influence of the NATO North Atlantic block block in the twenty-first century go through Donbass's much tormented land.
A hysterical anti-Russian and propaganda campaign against Russia has begun, in which the strongest nationalist voices of Ukraine and Poland are contributing to a new redistribution of the world, in the spirit of "Drang nach Osten!" (Spread to the East!).
The task of the international Slavic movement - strongly opposes the expansion of NATO to the East to show its aggressive nature, the bombing of Yugoslavia, which did not threaten any of the bloc's countries, the installation of anti-missile groups, missile launchers and other facilities against Russia and the genetic, spiritual and economic ties of Slavic cultures.
Necessary protection of the monuments and cemeteries of Soviet soldiers and other Slavic warriors who have decisively contributed to the victory over fascism, the rescue from destruction of the Slavic and other peoples of Europe and the world, bringing them freedom.
According to many delegates, the Slavic world faces two major global challenges: to revive the union of the states of Russia, Belarus and Ukraine, and to begin work on the creation of the Commonwealth of Independent Slavic States and Peoples.
The participants of the Anniversary Pan-Slavic Congress urge the public of Belarus, Russia and Ukraine to show their will for unity and to present a united front for the creation of the Union with the state of Russia. With all possible configurations of the emerging Eurasian Union, the Russian force will be the nucleus of multi-stage power in Eurasian integration, at a political, economic and social level.
To strengthen and develop this alliance - the main task of the Slavic movement. Its main objective - the creation of the Commonwealth of Independent Slavic States - the pan-Slavic Union. However, it must be understood that given the historical course of Russia with more than a hundred nations united in a single state, it is not only the core of pan-Slavic unification, but also the center of attraction for the peoples of the former Russian Empire, but also for other states. The Eurasian Union, created in 2011, provides for the establishment of a Confederate Union of States with a common policy in the economic, military, social and cultural spheres. However, this Eurasian Union will only be successful if it is reinforced by sovereign Slavic elements. The Union of Slavic States, United Russia on an equal footing, will become one of the foundations of a multipolar world.
The Congress participants believe that our Slavic movement aims to unite the different peoples of the Slavic world, to promote its historic mission - to become a bridge between Europe and Asia, the creation of the Eurasian Union of Nations, which paves the way for the Eurasian Economic Union.
Only under these conditions of unity the Slavic world will be able to fulfill its original world mission - to liberate mankind from false and one-sided development, which accepts history under the influence of the German-Roman Western civilization.
During the Jubilee of the Pan-Slavic Congress more than 30 documents and reports were prepared and approved. All the documents and material of the Congress was decided to be published in the media.
The delegates adopted the Jubilee of the Pan-Slavic Congress
June 1, 2017
We publish the letter that the Macedonian Education and Cultural Movement of Edessa sent to the organizers of the debate for national minorities in Greece that took place on 12/12/2016.
Round table discussion on the occasion of the International Day of Human
Subject: Ethnic minorities in Greece and recommendations of international organizations
3rd floor room of the ESHEA (Journalists' Union of Athens Daily Newspapers) building , in Athens
Ladies and gentlemen,
First of all, I would like to thank the organizers of the debate on "National minorities in Greece and recommendations of international organizations”, which are the Greek Helsinki Monitor and the Equality, Peace and Friendship Party, for the occasion given to me to present the views and proposals of the Macedonian minority in Greece, although only by this letter because of my inability to travel to Athens to attend the event in person.
My name is Eugenia Natsoulidou and I represent the non-profit company "Macedonian Education and Cultural Movement of Edessa", which has, as its key activity, the preservation and promotion of the mother tongue of Macedonians in Greece. Our company is a member of the European Organization, the Network to Promote Language Diversity (NPLD), with headquarters in Brussels.
Voluntary self-determination is one of the basic human rights which, unfortunately, in Greece did not have the protection that the State should provide to its citizens with any diversity, being it national / ethnic or linguistic or religious, etc. The state, being restricted by its very constitution that states «education is a key task of the State and shall aim at the moral, intellectual, professional and physical education of Greeks, the development of national and religious consciousness and at their formation as free and responsible citizens "(Article 16-Paragraph 2), has established, in fact, a situation of rejection of any of its citizens who do not fall into what the state each time decides that is nationally correct, thus violating the right of voluntary personal and collective self-determination. The right of self-determination is based on the conscience of each individual where a democratic State, that embraces the principles of European civilization, should not interfere.
I will not mention the persecution of all ethnic minorities in Greece in the past, because much time would be needed but also because, more or less, these are well known historical events on this issue. But I want to focus on the present and in the future. Greece has already lost a huge cultural wealth because of the old nationalist, in the bad sense, policy of creating an ethnic homogeneity on its people. It is high time now to change this and try to save, by state’s initiative, what can be saved from this wealth, without discrimination, without fear, without suspicion. Minorities are wealth for a country and as such should be treated. Violence, oppression, discrimination, injustice always has, as a result, the radicalization of a part of the minorities, with tragic consequences for all and for the majority, too.
Greece, as an equal member state of the EU, among other reforms, should take heed to sign and ratify the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities and the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. These conventions are the tools that Greece must offer to its minorities, so they can freely decide how and where to use them. Only in this way they will feel that the state actually protects them. If the state persists in violating basic human rights, as by insisting on homogeneity, there will always be risks of social unrest, distrust toward the state, discrimination and exploitation of situations, with unpredictable consequences.
The persistence of the Greek government in stating to international organizations that in the country there are no people who say they belong to national minorities or that they are too few to constitute a national minority, it is at least curious when considering the fact that the very state refuses to make a census of its population based on national/ethnic, linguistic, religious, etc. criteria! What does it has to fear, if this is indeed the situation?
A proper census will give evidence to the state about the minorities, so to make it able to address this issue calmly and with a serious dialogue with them, on taking initiatives towards their protection and on the solution of any problems that exist in their communities. And we must finally stop fearing one another! Fear is a bad counselor, in such cases. But only the state, with the right initiatives, can get us out of this state of fear, rather than the minorities themselves, which, anyway, are always at disadvantage against the state and do not have much room for maneuver.
In closing this text, I would like to point out that in Greece the people must realize that it is not considered a democratic conquest and respect for people just the fact that the oppression of national minorities is not as hard today as it was in the past, when they nearly were wiped out. Instead, respect is required for minorities and protection of their freedom to exist and to be able to exist also in the future, as there existed in the past, for many centuries, and survived until today, together with the riches of their culture, which they want to save and promote word wide.
Thank you for your attention!
March 4, 2016
On 2 March 2016, Csaba Sógor MEP (EPP), hosted a conference at the European Parliament in Brussels titled ‘Freedom of Association in Greece: A Loophole in European Minority Rights Standards’. The conference, organised in association with the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO) and the Federation of Western Thrace Turks in Europe (ABTTF), received unexpected attention as two Golden Dawn MEPs (non-attached) were caught on camera attempting to derail the conversation, immediately denying the existence of any minority other than the ‘Muslim minority’ referred to in the Lausanne Treaty.
The conference heard speeches from Mr Nils Torvalds MEP (ALDE), Dr Panayote Dimitras (Spokesperson of the Greek Helsinki Monitor), Ms Eugenia Natsoulidou (Founder of the Macedonian Educative and Culture Movement of EDESSA), Ms Melek Kırmacı Arık (International Affairs Director of ABTTF), and Ms Johanna Green (Programme Manager at UNPO). All speakers mentioned the gap between rhetoric and action, namely, that although Greece claims to protect its minorities’ rights, this is neither true in law or in fact. Indeed, in law, the only minority group recognised by the Greek government is the Muslim minority, thus no legal recognition of ethnic minorities such as the Turks or Macedonians is in place. On this point, Ms Natsoulidou referred to the ‘unsolvable problem’ of the Greek constitution’s Article 16(2) – on the development of national and religious conscience – which enables Greek politicians to dictate how the citizens should think and feel. Dr Dimitras then stressed the fact that the majority of the Greek population (including the politicians themselves) have a very limited knowledge about minority rights and issues, and that without awareness there could be no hope of change.
Another important topic raised throughout the conference was a number of cases brought against Greece in the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), by minority groups in Greece who had not been allowed to register their organisation because they used minority terminology in the name. In these cases the Court found Greece to have violated the groups’ right to freedom of association (Article 11) under the European Convention on Human Rights. Significantly, none of these judgments have been acted on, and the speakers all pushed for the recognition and implementation of these rulings.
The conference confirmed that more dialogue and debate is needed both at the national and European levels to overcome the politics of fear that continue to hamper progressive reform of minority rights legislation. As Ms Kırmacı emphasised, the non-implementation of the ECtHR judgments is not due simply to procedural reasons, but rather linked to the political question of recognising the Muslim minority of Western Thrace as Turkish. Finally, the conference called for the establishment of a policy framework or instrument to protect minority rights at the EU level. The European Union prides itself on its core values of respect for human rights and promotion of democracy; therefore to continue to allow Greece, a Member State since 1981, to violate the rights of its minorities in untenable.
To access the photos from the event click here
and Cultural Movement of Edessa” was founded in 2009 as a cultural
non-profit organization and since then the activity has been high in
We began by organizing literacy course of the
Macedonian language for adults who already are speakers of the local
The following period, we started issuing the magazine "Zadruga" with many interesting issues, going from information on the activities of our organization to many other subjects, too, such as history and culture.
Since 2012, the
“Education and Cultural Movement of Edessa" is a member of the
organization "Network to promote linguistic diversity “
(NPLD), based in Cardiff, Wales - UK that promotes the rights at EU
level of the regional or minority languages in the European
Through our organization we published and translated books on the Macedonian culture and history.
However, the title of our organization did not specify its identity. It was too general and confusing, especially to foreigners, about the character of our cultural identity.
Thus, on January 12, 2016, following a decision
of our members, the title of our non-profit organization was legally
changed to become the "Macedonian Education and Cultural
Movement of Edessa" which accurately describes the character and
identity of the culture our organization promotes.
are committed to promote, also in the future, each element of
Macedonian culture, from the language, the history, the tradition to
the most modern expressions of this civilization.
- The Educational and Cultural Movement of Edessa attended the
Congress of FUEN (Federal Union of European Nationalities), after the
invitation received by the Bureau of the Federation. The conference
took place in Komotini from 14 to 17 May and was co-organized by
organizations and associations of the Turkish Minority of Western
The speech by Eugenia Natsoulidou, representative of the Education and Culture Movement of Edessa, at the Congress.
participated in the first joint party for cutting the New Year's Pie,
organized by 20 Macedonian Cultural Associations from Imathia, Pella,
Thessaloniki, Serres, Florina, Kastoria and Kozani. The event took
place Saturday, February 1, 2014, in the dancing Hall 'Moments' in
the outskirts of Edessa and it had a great success!
- This year, too, we cut our New Year's Pie (Vasilopita) in
Volkojanovo-Vodensko, involving new friends and young people who
honored us with their presence to our party.
party for Cutting the Vasilopita of the "Educative and Cultural
Movement of Edessa" in the village Volkojanovo-Vodensko (Lykoi
Edessas) was very successful.
there was little participation because of the bad weather (it rained
all day almost the entire region of Macedonia) for an event in the
open, we had the best party in Aegean Macedonia! For a few hours, in
the old village of Cegan, Macedonians from the 4 parts of Macedonia
had the opportunity to celebrate May the 1st having fun together,
dancing and singing!
The party started around 12:30 (noon) and ended
at about 21:30! We had a musical band from Neret (Lerinsko), a
wonderful group of musicians from Sandanski (Pirin Macedonia) and, at
the end, the younger participants at the party played music with an
accordion and a small drum and sang the best Macedonian patriotic
songs. During the event, some young men came to the area and we found
out they were Macedonians from Golo B'rdo (Albania), who work in
Greece during the summer! And they had also the opportunity to dance
some Macedonian dances and drink some rakija with us!
We had members
of the Association "Cegan" from Skopje who traveled by bus
a so long way to attend the event in their old village, with us.
Among them there was the great singer Marija Dimkova which sang for
us some beautiful songs! She had the opportunity to meet also with
some people from Pozar, her village of origin.
The event was great and unique! The Educational and Cultural Movement of Edessa will organize the May 1st party from now on, each time in a different Macedonian village where the Macedonians united will be free to have fun by the best Macedonian way!
MACEDONIAN LANGUAGE CLASSES
19/12/2009 - We would like from this website to thank our Macedonian friend from Sweden who was so kind to donate us about 100 (one hundred) books of Swedish children's tales ("Ia poznavas li Pipi dolgiot corap?" and "Prikaznata za crvenoto jabolko» ) translated from Swedish into Macedonian.
Participants in the literacy courses of our language, to whom the books were distributed for free, accepted them with great joy.
MACEDONIAN LANGUAGE CLASSES
program for learning the literacy of the Macedonian language for
speakers of it was successfully completed.
The program included courses of the Cyrillic alphabet and a grammar for people who already speak the local dialect so they can read and write to it.
Due to a great interest for these courses, we hope to repeat our program next spring.
The program of the courses has a two-month duration and is free.