Thessaloniki, the natural port and administrative centre for the whole of Macedonia, was the headquarters of the struggle for control of the region. This came about thanks to the efforts of two people in particular, the Greek Consul General, Lambros Koromilas, and 2nd Lieutenant Athanasios Souliotis.
From 1904 to 1907, from his office in the neoclassical building of the Consulate, Koromilas organized and directed the Greek information network and supervised the operations of the armed bands in central and eastern Macedonia.
He had valuable assistance in the form of a team of specially trained officers who were the administrative sectoral heads of the Struggle. Among them, Dimitrios Kakkavos (alias Zois) and Athanasios Exadaktylos (alias Antoniou) stood out for their experience.
Souliotis (alias Nikolaidis) was responsible for the Consulate's security and for rallying Thessaloniki's Greek community to the cause. Camouflaging his espionage activities with his role as a merchant, he managed with systematic effort to create an exceptionally efficient network of information and undercover operations.
Professionals and workers from every social class in Thessaloniki were inducted into this network, and enrolled in picking up and sending messages, executing punishments, and waging a successful economic war at the expense of the (Bulgarian) Exarchic community.