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Refugees in the era of the Great War

This book talks about the mass displacement of civilians, estimated to be 14 to 15 million, in the twentieth-century Europe during the First World War. It looks at the causes and consequences of the refugee crisis and its aftermath, and the attempts to understand its significance. Key sites of displacement extended from Belgium to Armenia, taking in France, Italy, Austria-Hungary, East Prussia, the Russian Empire, Bulgaria, Greece, Turkey and Serbia. The German army's occupation of Belgium, France, Poland and Lithuania prompted the mass flight of refugees, as did Russia's invasion of East Prussia in 1914. Jewish, Ruthenian and Polish civilians in the Habsburg Empire fled their homes or were deported by the military to distant locations. Following Italy's attack on Austria-Hungary in May 1915, the Habsburg authorities ordered around 100,000 Slovenian subjects of the empire to leave. The Austrian and Bulgarian invasion of Serbia brought about a humanitarian catastrophe as civilians and the remnants of the Serbian army sought safety elsewhere. However, mass flight of civilian refugees did not begin in 1914 nor did it come to an end in 1918. Muslim refugees fled to the relative safety of Anatolia in order to escape violent persecution by Bulgarian and other forces during the Balkan Wars on 1912-13. There were complex movements of population between Greece, Bulgaria and Turkey before 1914. The complex process of repatriation and resettlement affected soldiers and civilians alike and rarely took place in stable or peaceful circumstances.

Refugees and state building in Lithuania and Courland, 1914–21
Klaus Richter

Lithuanians in the Vilnius region further complicated the process of repatriation. At the same time, the increasing control and impermeability of the new borders perpetuated the status quo of displacement. Lithuanian refugees from Ukraine who attempted to enter Lithuania from the south became stranded in Vilnius. The Polish administration blamed the Lithuanian authorities, who allegedly refused to grant these refugees passports, thus forcing Polish officials to provide the refugees with food. Lithuanian officials in turn complained that the Polish authorities were using

in Europe on the move
Abstract only
Gatrell Peter

Balkelis, ‘In search of a native realm: the return of World War I refugees to Lithuania, 1918–1924’, in Baron and Gatrell (eds), Homelands, pp. 74–97. 51 Mikų Dėdė, ‘Lietuvos tremtiniai iš Ukrainos’, quoted in Tomas Balkelis, ‘Forging a “moral community”: the Great War and Lithuanian refugees in Russia’, in Balkelis and Davoliūtė (eds), Population Displacement in Lithuania, p. 50. 52 In addition to the works cited by Üngör and Salvanou, see Elisabeth Kontogiorgi, Population Exchange in Greek Macedonia: the Rural Settlement of Refugees 1922–1930 (Oxford: Clarendon Press

in Europe on the move
Liubov Zhvanko and Oleksiy Nestulya

control over refugee repatriation. Soviet policy was determined by domestic political interests and by relations with the receiving states, Poland, Latvia and Lithuania. In 1920 Soviet Russia concluded bilateral agreements with these countries in which, among other things, Polish, Latvian and Lithuanian refugees’ re-evacuation was regulated. However, in reality, Soviet power hindered the re-evacuation of intellectuals, specialists such as engineers and doctors, some categories of qualified workers and employees, as well as Ukrainian peasants.40 The tragic fate of those

in Europe on the move