The American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association (Order of AHEPA), the American Hellenic Institute (AHI), B’nai B’rith International, and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations issued the following statement:
Our organizations welcome reports that Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades will visit Israel on separate occasions this month. Their visits will be the first by foreign leaders to Israel following the easing of COVID-19-related travel restrictions. We believe this demonstrates the priority each country places on their respective bilateral relations.
Prime Minster Mitsotakis and President Anastasiades will be accompanied by several of their ministers. We view this positively as relations continue to strengthen across various sectors in a show of ongoing commitment to peace, progress, and prosperity for the region. In particular, we applaud the emphasis placed by these countries in recent statements on the importance of resuming tourism, especially in a safe manner.
We will continue to lend broad diaspora support and encouragement to advancing the trilateral partnership and common efforts aimed to achieve tangible and measurable outcomes. Our hope is that post-pandemic conditions will allow for yet another trilateral summit in 2020 to pursue the foundation of cooperation built across a variety of areas by the trilateral partnership.
Finally, our organizations note that Prime Minister Mitsotakis’ reported planned visit to Israel comes on the heels of the two countries marking 30 years of diplomatic ties, which his father, former Prime Minister Konstantinos Mitsotakis, established.
AHEPA, AHI, B’nai B’rith International, and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations completed their Fourth Biannual Leadership Mission to Israel, Cyprus, and Greece in January 2020. Their groundbreaking inaugural Leadership Mission to the three countries occurred in January 2014. The missions have been widely recognized and praised as contributing to intergroup and international cooperation and friendship.
In December 2018, the organizations co-sponsored an international conference held in Jerusalem titled, “New Realities in the Eastern Mediterranean.”
In August 2011 and December 2012, they co-organized roundtable discussions in New York City between leaders of the American Jewish and American Hellenic communities.
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Founded in 1922 in Atlanta, Georgia, on the principles that undergirded its fight for civil rights and against discrimination, bigotry, and hatred felt at the hands of the Ku Klux Klan, AHEPA is the largest and oldest grassroots association of American citizens of Greek heritage and Philhellenes with more than 400 chapters across the United States, Canada, and Europe.
AHEPA’s mission is to promote the ancient Greek ideals of Education, Philanthropy, Civic Responsibility, and Family and Individual Excellence through community service and volunteerism.
For more information, please visit www.ahepa.org.