CNA – NICOSIA 13/1/2016
Representatives of the Greek and the Jewish Diaspora in the United States have described the approach and co-operation between Greece, Cyprus and Israel as historic.
Greek and Jewish lobby group representatives in the US who are currently visiting the three countries in a joint delegation held a meeting on Wednesday with President Nicos Anastasiades at the Presidential Palace.
In statements following the meeting, AHEPA Supreme President John Galanis said that “we are here with two significant Jewish American organisations and we are here collectively to learn about and encourage and support measures for the three countries of Israel, Greece and Cyprus to collaborate on topics to concern of all of them”.
“The President was very candid and gave us a full review of the current status of the situation and issues facing Cyprus. We highlighted the advantage the three countries have to work together because frankly they are very similar in people, backgrounds, for many years, centuries actually the Greeks and Jewish people,” he added.
He also said that “we came from Jerusalem where we spent three days. We met with Prime Minister Netanyahu. Very constructive meetings, open and friendly. And the idea was for us to learn their views so that we can be supportive and generally exchange ideas”.
The CEO of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organisations in his statements said that “the fact that we are here in a joint delegation is not historic because the Greek community and the Jewish community in the United States have worked together for a long time”.
“We have been engaged in common efforts on a community level, on a national level for many years. What is historic is the coming together of Greece, Cyprus and Israel in building an Eastern Mediterranean relationship that could have broad impact. And at a time that we see so much turmoil in the world, when we see borders disappearing, countries collapsing, to see the reinforcing relationship, the mutual relationship that these three countries they can do so much on a political level, economical level, tourism level, psychological level I think that it’s a message to the world at this critical time.
“And we in our meetings with the Prime Minister of Israel and here with the President we are hearing the same messages from them, and I am sure we will hear the same when we get to Greece. And we look really to a better future for all of our children. and if this works we can bring in other countries into it, slowly, eventually that could be a really transformative development in the relationship in this whole region,” he added.