Last night, the Congressional Caucus on Hellenic Issues kicked off our first Stand with Greece Policy Summit with our opening member reception. Along with Caucus Co-Chair Carolyn Maloney, we heard from other leading Caucus Members Chris Van Hollen, Dina Titus, Illeana Ros-Lehtinen, Tim Ryan, John Larson, Ted Deutch, Mario Diaz-Balart, Dan Donovan and others about the need to develop policies to provide technical and security support to our longtime friend and ally.
The idea of this event, and the work of the Caucus, is to cultivate stronger relations between Greece and the United States by bringing a renewed congressional focus on key diplomatic, military, and human right issues in a critical part of the world.
At the outset, we are circulating a caucus-wide letter asking the Department of Homeland Security to formulate and provide practical recommendations and technical assistance to share with Greece and her respective border control agencies. The surge of refugees in Greece has been overwhelming, and we recognize that DHS’s expertise in border control and management can assist Greece in accelerating the speed and efficiency of intake procedures with little cost to our own resources. The letter can he found here.
This is just the beginning. Today, we will have three separate panel discussions to further evaluate the current situation in Greece and how we can help.
11AM – 12:30PM | | CVC Auditorium from
We will discuss the challenges and prospects for business and administrative reform in Greece and ways those challenges can be alleviated. We plan to hear from Dr. Thanos Catsambas, an economist and longtime IMF employee, former Greek Minister for Culture and Tourism Pavlos Geroulanos, and businessman Ted Diamantis on this panel and hope their expertise can help develop policy to bolster cooperation and growth in Greece.
1:30PM – 2:45PM | CVC Auditorium
We plan to hear from Amb. Eleni Tsakopoulos Kounalakis, New York State Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis, and His Eminence Metropolitan Gabriel of Nea Ionia and Philadelphia on their perspective on the future transformations in Greece, how reform is taking hold in various regions in Greece and on the national stage, and how guidance and assistance from the United States can further than process.
3PM – 4:15PM| CVC 268, North Meeting Room
We will discuss regional security and the geostrategic importance of Greece as a European country on the border of the volatile Middle East. Panelists are expected to include Robert D. Kaplan, Senior Fellow at the Center for a New American Security, Jeff Rathke from the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Member of the European Parliament Eva Kaili, and Atlantic Council delegate Nikolas Katsimpras to discuss ways U.S. polices can help the European-wide migration problem and assist Greek military demands.
Please join us today to hear from leading policy minds how the United States can practically stand with our longtime friend and ally, Greece.
Congressman Gus Bilirakis
Congressman Gus Bilirakis (FL-12)