Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis pointed out the significance of Greek-Israeli relations to the new executive director of the American Jewish Committee, Ted Deutch, in his meeting with him at the Maximos Palace on Thursday.
Mitsotakis also underlined the excellent level of Greek-US relations and, according to government sources, presented to Deutch in detail the initiatives that Greece has taken and the infrastructure it is developing, especially the FSRU in Alexandroupolis, in order to turn this into an energy hub for the wider region, which will contribute to stability, Europe's energy security and end dependence on the Russian fossil fuels.
According to the same sources, their meeting was also the first contact between the new AJC executive director and a foreign leader since Deutch assumed his duties.
Meanwhile, in his statements to AMNA, the mayor of Athens, Kostas Bakoyannis, referred to the catalytic role of local administration in undertaking actions and policies to combat divisive phenomena in local communities, such as antisemitism and other forms of racial and religious hatred, on the sidelines of the 2022 Summit of Mayors Against Antisemitism (MSAA) taking place in Athens on November 30 and December 1, at the Hyatt Hotel.
Speaking to AMNA, Bakoyannis underlined: "It is a great joy and honour to welcome in Athens such a conference, which brings together so many important mayors from all over the world, putting our city at the forefront of the battle against antisemitism and at the centre of a global debate."
"The role of local authorities is a catalyst in the fight against intolerance, since as the institution closest to the citizens, we are called upon to incorporate the feelings of the citizens and their struggles in the decision-making process. Athens, in its long history, maintains deep and meaningful relations with the Jewish community. Our city was and remains an ally of tolerance, of personal freedom for all," he added.
During his greeting, the mayor of Athens noted that "intolerance is a direct threat to our democratic way of life. It has no place in our societies and therefore we must work together to isolate and eradicate it. [...] and we have the unique and valuable opportunity to share our experiences. Let this Summit against anti-Semitism be the trigger so that we can move forward with transformational actions and initiatives and build our societies with greater tolerance and resilience."
Bakoyannis particularly noted the deep relationship between the city of Athens and the Israeli community by pointing out: "I am very proud to serve the great city of Athens, a city established upon liberal principles and values. This is where Democracy was born and here since ancient times we keep in our hearts and minds a rational dialogue, a dialogue without exclusions. At the same time, Athens is the city that cultivated deep and meaningful relationships with the Jewish community for thousands of years. Until today. I am proud, because Athens incessantly offers safety and freedom to everyone."