AJC Delegation Concludes Visit to Athens

By The Associated Press | Posted - Mar. 6, 2014 at 11:01 a.m.



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-- WITH PHOTO -- TO FOREIGN, NATIONAL, AND RELIGION EDITORS:

AJC Delegation Concludes Visit to Athens

ATHENS, March 6, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- An AJC senior

leadership delegation just concluded a three-day visit to Greece.

The 12-member AJC delegation, led by AJC President Stanley Bergman,

and Executive Director David Harris, was joined by leaders of the

Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece, an AJC partner

organization, and Andrew Manatos, a prominent representative of the

Greek-American community.

The group met with top-level officials in the Greek government,

including Prime Minister Antonis Samaras; Deputy Prime Minister and

Minister of Foreign Affairs Evangelos Venizelos; Defense Minister

Dimitris Avramopoulos and the Joint Chiefs of Staff; Minister of

Public Order Nikos Dendias; Minister of Culture Panos Panagiotopoulos,

who hosted a dinner for the group; and Minister of Education and

Religious Affairs Konstantinos Arvanitopoulos.

The delegation also met with the U.S. and Israeli ambassadors to

Greece, as well as members of the Greece-Israel Parliamentary

Friendship Committee, including its chairman, Kostas Karagounis of the

New Democracy Party, and representatives of four other political

parties -- PASOK, Syriza, Democratic Left, and Independent Greeks.

"In all our meetings, we heard strong support for strategic ties with

both Israel and the United States, as well as condemnation of racism,

including the vile, neo-Nazi ideology promoted by the Golden Dawn,"

said Harris. "Moreover, we were heartened by the progress being

achieved in Greece's economic situation, even as much more remains to

be done in the months and years ahead. We came to Greece as deeply

committed friends, and we leave Greece as deeply committed friends."

Aside from regular visits to the Greek capital over the past three

decades, AJC has maintained robust relationships with Greek leaders

through engagement with diplomats and diaspora communities in regional

offices around the country and AJC's network of offices in Europe.

Reflecting the views of several of the Greek leaders with whom the

group met, Defense Minister Avramopoulos described AJC as "one of the

architects of the strategic partnership" that today characterizes the

relationship among Greece, the U.S., Cyprus, and Israel.

Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20100816/AJCLOGO

SOURCE American Jewish Committee

-0- 03/06/2014

/CONTACT: Kenneth Bandler, AJC Director of Media Relations, 212.891.6771, bandlerk@ajc.org

/Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20100816/AJCLOGO

PRN Photo Desk, photodesk@prnewswire.com

/Web Site: http://www.ajc.org

CO: American Jewish Committee

ST: Greece

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The Associated Press

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