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Organizations Come Together to Bid Farewell to Cypriot Ambassador
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: C. Franciscos Economides
August 3, 2010—No. 51 (202) 785-8430

Organizations Come Together to Bid Farewell to Cypriot Ambassador

WASHINGTON, DC (July 30, 2010) — Four Greek American organizations came together to bid farewell to His Excellency Andreas Kakouris, ambassador of the Republic of Cyprus to the U.S., and his family, by hosting a dinner in the ambassador’s honor on Tuesday, July 27, 2010, at the Capital Hilton, Washington.

The American Hellenic Institute (AHI), American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association (AHEPA), Hellenic American National Council (HANC), and SAE-USA paid homage to Cyprus’s leading diplomat with remarks that reflected upon Ambassador Kakouris’ dedication and effectiveness, eloquence, and humble demeanor that he displayed during his three-and-a-half-year tenure in Washington.

And all of those qualities that made his tenure a success came out during Ambassador Kakouris’ address to an intimate gathering of community leaders, colleagues and friends. He described the European Union as a mosaic. Each country, including Cyprus, is a unique piece of the mosaic yet each country is vital to the overall mosaic. Ambassador Kakouris used this as an analogy for the many Greek American and Diaspora organizations that exist, stating each has its role to play.

“United we stand,” he said. “United we can make a difference.”

The ambassador stressed that the community must reinvigorate its efforts to keep Cyprus on the radar. He reemphasized the Cyprus issue is one about the rule of law and the violation of human rights. 

“Peace is not the absence of war,” said the ambassador, displaying his eloquence. “Peace is the presence of democracy, human rights, and the rule of law.”

Ambassador Kakouris, who was accompanied by his wife, Kareen, and his daughter Andreana (his son Stephen was unable to attend), also spoke of the impact working as a diplomat has on one’s family. He thanked his family for their love and support and stated he could not do what he does without them.

The ambassador made special mention of AHI Founder Eugene T. Rossides, thanking him for his “fighting spirit.”

He concluded with a special message for the youth, stating that younger generations need to keep up the battle and have a significant role to play at universities.

Organizations Laud Work of Ambassador Kakouris

Presentations were made to the Kakouris family by AHEPA Supreme President Nicholas A. Karacostas and AHI Founder Eugene T. Rossides, AHI Board of Directors Secretary Nick Karambelas, AHI Board Member James Marketos, Esq., and AHI Executive Director Nick Larigakis.

In his remarks Supreme President Karacostas credited Ambassador Kakouris for elevating the visibility of the Cyprus issue, including the unfortunate destruction of its cultural and religious heritage, to key audiences. He also complimented the ambassador for his accessibility to all facets of the community. In addition, the supreme president spoke of AHEPA’s ongoing commitment to the Cyprus issue and the organization’s work to revitalize the grassroots. 

AHI Executive Director Larigakis described Ambassador Kakouris as a “man of true integrity and humility.” He also highlighted the upcoming AHI Foundation-sponsored documentary, “Cyprus Still Divided: A U.S. Foreign Policy Failure” that will premiere Sept 13 on Detroit Public Television. Moreover, AHI Founder Rossides spoke about the key to moving ahead the Cyprus issue is with Congress and the administration. Rossides recalled AHI and AHEPA’s work together to successfully impose the embargo on Turkey. AHI’s leadership presented the ambassador with the AHI Hellenic Heritage Public Service Award.

SAE-USA President Ted Spyropoulos was unable to attend. A letter on his behalf was read by AHI Executive Director Larigakis. Spyropoulos expressed appreciation and respect for the ambassador’s work and wished him success in his future endeavors. 

In his remarks, Paul Kotrotsios, president, Hellenic American National Council, offered greetings and thanks on behalf of the all the federation presidents. He complimented Ambassador Kakouris for his “exemplary service.”


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AHI Board Member Marketos, AHI Executive Director Larigakis, Mrs. Kakouris, Ambassador Kakouris, AHI Founder Rossides, and AHI Board Secretary Karambelas gather following the presentation of the AHI Hellenic Heritage Public Service Award to the ambassador.

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Ambassador Kakouris and Executive Director Larigakis share a moment before the dinner.

Eugene Rossides
AHI Founder/AHI Foundation President Rossides spoke about the importance of the Cyprus issue.

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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.