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AHI Commends Congressman Ackerman for “Strongly Urging” Woodrow Wilson Center to Rescind Award to Turkish Foreign Minister
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: C. Franciscos Economides
June 16, 2010—No. 41 (202) 785-8430

AHI Commends Congressman Ackerman for “Strongly Urging” Woodrow Wilson Center to Rescind Award to Turkish Foreign Minister

Ackerman: Davutoglu’s leadership is “rife with illegality, irresponsibility and hypocrisy”

WASHINGTON, DC — The American Hellenic Institute (AHI) commends U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-NY) for his June 15, 2010 letter to Woodrow Wilson Center’s President and Director Lee Hamilton in which he expresses his “deep concern and dismay regarding the intention of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (WWC) to honor Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu with the WWC Public Service Award.” The congressman, who chairs the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on the Middle East and South Asia, and who is a senior member of the Foreign Affairs Committee, also strongly urges Hamilton to rescind the decision.

“We applaud Chairman Ackerman for his powerful letter to Mr. Hamilton, which reaffirms AHI’s call to rescind the award to the foreign minister,” said AHI Executive Director Nick Larigakis. “We urge Congress, which funds about one-third of WWC annual revenue, to investigate the Center’s decision.”

In his letter, signed as Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Middle East and South Asia, Congressman Ackerman wrote:

“Turkey’s foreign policy under Foreign Minister Davutoglu’s leadership is rife with illegality, irresponsibility and hypocrisy. Turkey continues to not only deny the Armenian Genocide, but also to criminalize recognition of it in Turkey. Worse, Ankara threatens to break relations with states that acknowledge the role of the Ottoman Empire in the deliberate annihilation of 1.5 million Armenians as a matter of state policy. Turkey continues to militarily occupy Cyprus and to work against U.S.-backed efforts by the United Nations to resolve the conflict on that island.”

To view the chairman’s press release and entire letter, please click here.

Congressman Ackerman’s letter comes soon after Donald Wilson Bush’s critical examination of Center’s decision to honor Foreign Minister Davutoglu on June 6, 2010, which AHI also welcomed.

Click here to view AHI’s May 21,2010 letter to Mr. Hamilton. (1.2 MB PDF file.)

The American Hellenic Institute (AHI) is a 501 (c) (6) non-profit, tax-exempt organization that works to strengthen relations between the United States and Greece and Cyprus, and within the Greek American community.

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For additional information, please contact C. Franciscos Economides at (202) 785-8430 or at [email protected]. For general information about the activities of AHI, please see our website at http://www.ahiworld.org.