Oral Myths, LTTA in Greece

A Wonderful Story of the Holy Week of 1947

Nialas’ neck

It’s been just 70 years since the wonderful story that unfolded on April 12-13, 1947, in the midst of the tragic civil war, which took place in Greece after the second world war between 1946-1949. It was then Holy Week.

The amazing case happened in our mountain range called Agrafa and was recorded as “Nialas’ tragedy” or “reconciliation of Nialas”.

In Vragiana, Evritania, many well-equipped government forces encircled the positions of rebel groups. Apart from the soldiers, there were injured men as well as families.

There was no way out, except from Nialas’ neck, at an altitude of over 2,000 meters, if the government’s army had not yet arrived there.

The three rebel groups started the tragic course.

Among them there were women and children, sick and wounded

At that time, a terrible blizzard erupted, unbearable cold, an air that blew everything out in its path.

The paths were covered by snow and sometimes the soldiers kept losing their orientation.

Both rebels and civilians began to die from the cold, while whoever went to the wrong point fell on the cliff.

The two rebel groups, with considerable losses, finally passed.

The third group, which wanted to cross the neck from another point into the snowstorm that hindered the visibility over just a few meters, was unexpectedly found on a government camp.

Officers and gunmen from the government army, who also had their own dead men due to the cold, left their watchtower and went into the tents, to be protected from the terrible night.

Tortured from the cold, men and women of the rebel group entered the army tents. Neither side lifted a weapon against the other.

Back to back, exchanging few words, rebels and government soldiers waited for the wild night to pass, making an informal truce.

When the sun went up, those who were able to walk got up and left.

Many, quite helpless, stayed there and were arrested in the next few hours.

Nature, once again, gave the message of what was to be done in order to end, politically, the tragic adventure that had begun in the country and among other things, had accumulated enormous human pain.

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