Last week we have published an article about Pomaks – a Slavic Muslim group of Bulgaria, some Balkan countries and Thrace.
The topic connected with it is Turks of these same lands, which historically were named as Rumelia.
Speaking about the Turks, we need to remember, that modern Turkey and Ottoman empire are not the same. While the modern Turkey is located in historical Anatolia, which is in Minor Asia, European part of Ottoman empire, located in the lands of Slavs, Illyrians and Greeks was known as Rumelia.
The Muslims of those lands were partly local converts, partly settlers from Anatolia, which didn’t stop local Christians to consider all them as Turks. However the community with Turkish self-identification was formed only after the Ottoman Empire was destroyed, when all these countries became independent states and their local converts were either killed or expelled, or forcefully converted into Christianity. Among local Muslims only Bosnian, Albanians (partly) and some small groups like Pomaks could survive with their own identity. The rest, who could survive as Muslims, did it as a part of recognized Turkish minority, regardless of their real ancestry.
So, who are the modern Turks of former Rumelia or modern European countries? They are a mix of Turks from Anatolia and local converts, who accepted Turkish identity.
But what kind of mix actually? While typical Turks of Anatolia have Minor Asian genetical dominants, Rumelian Turks have from 50% to 90% of European genetical ancestry with the rest coming from Minor and Central Asia.

That’s why, while both Rumelian and Anatolian Turks consider themselves as part of one nation, which is of course their right, from our native European Muslim’s point of view, we have to differ between them and consider Rumelian Turks as one of ours as well, while Anatolian Turks as members of our common Caucasian racebut not as a part of European genetic pool itself. 

In the photo above – a prominent Rumelian Turk Hacıoğlu Molla Ahmet, who tried to establish Independent West-Thracian-Turkish Republic in 1919-1920.

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