Chairman of the Executive of The Jewish Agency Isaac Herzog met yesterday in Athens, Greece, with the Prime Minister of Greece Kyriakos Mitsotakis and expressed grave concern over recent actions and statements by Iran and its proxies, Hezbollah and Hamas.
"Iran and its regional proxies threaten the stability of the entire Middle East," said Herzog. "There is a very clear conflict between the free world and the dark axis led by Iran that aims, step-by-step, to takeover Middle Eastern nations, posing a direct threat to world peace as well as to citizens living under this regime who desperately want to free themselves from living under tyranny.”
Herzog addressed the wave of antisemitism sweeping throughout Europe and told the Greek Prime Minister: "Your government will soon hold the rotating chairmanship of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), the organization that formulated the working definition of antisemitism adopted by many countries around the world. I offer you and your government closer cooperation in combating antisemitism, preserving the memory of the Holocaust and the lessons of the Holocaust, working together with Greek communities outside Greece and Jewish communities outside Israel. We both have minority diaspora communities in countries around the world. History obliges us to remember that what starts with the Jews never ends with the Jews."
On the issue of combating antisemitism, Prime Minister of Greece Kyriakos Mitsotakis said, “We are relentlessly fighting all forms of antisemitism. This is a very important issue, for me personally as well. I plan on visiting Auschwitz with my wife, in memory of all the Greek Jews who perished there.”
The meeting between Herzog and Mitsotakis was held after a triple summit between Jewish Agency Chairman Isaac Herzog, Greek Deputy Foreign Minister for Greeks Abroad Kostas Vlasis, and Cypriot Presidential Commissioner for Overseas Cypriots Photis Photiou. The summit was held to discuss a new Jewish Agency project, in cooperation with the governments of Greece and Cyprus, that draws on Jewish Agency experience in fostering the Jewish Diaspora over the past 90 years, to build connections between the diasporas of the three nations and to increase cooperation in the fight against antisemitism and racism.
Following the summit, Commissioner Photiou told Chairman Herzog that, “Cyprus and Greece are your strategic partners in the fight against antisemitism. We support you unconditionally and will always, always stand by your side.”
As part of the project, youth delegations from the three communities will take a joint roots tour of the three countries, heads of Greek diaspora organizations will meet Jewish community leaders around the world, and a future project will be launched to increase cooperation against antisemitism and racism worldwide, including collaboration between Jewish, Greek and Cypriot students on campuses around the US.
The summit also aimed to deepen cooperation between the countries in commemoration of the Holocaust and to launch a joint Holocaust memorial project, together with the Jewish community in Greece, which will include an event sponsored by the Greek government, to be held in Athens or Thessaloniki.