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Reply Of Presidential Nominee Al Gore To American Hellenic Institute Public Affairs Committee Calls For Expansion Of The U.S.-Greek Relationship, Endorses Redoubling Of Efforts To Reach A Just And Lasting Solution To The Cyprus Problem And Praises Role Of
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: JONATHAN CLARKE
August 11, 2000 No. 41/00 (202) 785-8430

Reply Of Presidential Nominee Al Gore To American Hellenic Institute Public Affairs Committee Calls For Expansion Of The U.S.-Greek Relationship, Endorses Redoubling Of Efforts To Reach A Just And Lasting Solution To The Cyprus Problem And Praises Role Of Greek Americans

As a service to AHI members and the Greek American community in general during the 2000 presidential campaign, the American Hellenic Institute Public Affairs Committee sent a letter (copy attached) to all candidates seeking their responses to a questionnaire (copy attached) drawing on three central issues:

  1. Greece's role as the key partner for advancing U.S. regional interests;
  2. The search for a just resolution of the Cyprus problem in accordance with democratic principles and UN Security Council resolutions; and
  3. Turkey's failure to abide by the rule of law and democratic norms, both in its relations with Greece and Cyprus, and in its domestic affairs regarding human minority and human rights.

During the primary season, the only reply received was from Senator Bill Bradley.

In advance of the Democrat and Republican party conventions, AHIPAC again contacted the campaigns of Vice-President Al Gore and Governor George W. Bush to seek their responses on these issues.

AHIPAC has now received a reply from the Gore campaign. A copy is attached. The highlights are:

  1. Gore praises Greece as the "birthplace of the concept of partnership between people and government that lies at the heart of what we call democracy."
  2. Gore highlights the "long-standing historical, political and cultural ties" between the U.S. and Greece based on a "common heritage, shared democratic values and participation as Allies during World War II, the Korean conflict and the Cold War."
  3. Gore commits a Gore administration to continue the "expansion of the U.S.-Greek relationship."
  4. On Cyprus, Gore undertakes to pursue a "comprehensive settlement on Cyprus" that would be "in accordance with international law."
  5. On Turkey, Gore states that a "democratic, stable and internationally-oriented Turkey is critical" to efforts to make progress on the Aegean and Cyprus.
  6. Gore acknowledges his concern over the "scope of religious freedom in Turkey" in respect of the Ecumenical Patriarchate and states that a resolution of this issue would "promote the cause of freedom and peaceful co-existence throughout the region."

Finally, Mr. Gore praises the efforts of the Greek American community and undertakes and work closely with it in his administration.

AHIPAC Chairman Nicholas E. Chimicles commented:

"We are pleased to receive this response from the Gore campaign. We welcome Mr. Gore's commitment to a close relationship with Greece and to the search for a settlement of the Cyprus problem. We regret, however, that his statement is very general in nature and that it does not provide specific answers to the questions posed in our questionnaire."