Balkan Pact

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(1934, 1954)

An attempt to reduce the tensions in the Balkans which had been evident for half a century. In February 1934, a defensive pact was signed by Yugoslavia, Romania, Greece, and Turkey. From the start, its aim to restore stability and cooperation to the entire region of the Balkans proved futile, as a resentful Bulgaria refused to join, due to its claims over Macedonia which had become part of Greece and Serbia. The pact became the basis for the Balkan Entente which joined the signatory states in a permanent council. It was too weak to provide any united resistance to German and Italian invasion during World War II. Indeed, the Balkan states were deeply divided in their response to the War, between opposition (Greece), cooperation (Romania and Bulgaria), neutrality (Turkey), and internal divisions (Yugoslavia). After World War II, a second Balkan Pact between Yugoslavia, Greece, and Turkey was formed in 1954. This became ineffective within a few months because of mounting Graeco‐Turkish tensions over Cyprus.

Subjects: Contemporary History (Post 1945).

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