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AHI Submits Letter to The Washington Post; Welcomes Fmr. State Dept. Officials’ Critique of Turkey
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Georgea Polizos
February 4, 2014—No. 7 (202) 785-8430

AHI Submits Letter to The Washington Post; Welcomes Fmr. State Dept. Officials’ Critique of Turkey

WASHINGTON, DC — The American Hellenic Institute (AHI) released a letter to the editor it submitted to The Washington Post in response to a January 23, 2014 opinion piece titled “The United States needs to tell Turkey to change course,” by Morton Abramowitz and Eric Edelman, two former U.S. ambassadors to Turkey; and Blaise Misztal, acting director of foreign policy, Bipartisan Policy Center’s Turkey Initiative.

The authors of the opinion piece assert that Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is “destroying his country’s parlous democracy” which is creating “a pressing dilemma for the United States.”  They argue for the United States to make it clear that the prime minister’s actions are endangering the U.S.-Turkey relationship.

In his letter, AHI President Nick Larigakis applauds their critique of the prime minister’s actions writing, “It was refreshing to read that former State Department officials stationed in Turkey are calling for the U.S. government to get tough with Turkey...For far too long U.S. policy toward Turkey has been one of appeasement and double standard.”  Larigakis also provides examples of how Turkey ignores democratic ideals, specifically the rule of law, especially as it pertains to Turkey’s neighbors, including Greece, Cyprus, and Israel.

Larigakis concludes, “The Obama Administration must change the United States’ long-standing policy of appeasement with Turkey and demand it respect democratic values, institutions, and the rule of law or else there will be strong consequences.   This approach will serve the best interests of Turkey and the U.S.”

To read the opinion piece, please click here.  President Larigakis’ letter to the editor is found below.

The American Hellenic Institute is a non-profit Greek American think-tank and public policy center 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 Georgea Polizos at (202) 785-8430 or at pr@ahiworld.org. For general information about the activities of AHI, please see our website at http://www.ahiworld.org.


 

 

January 24, 2014

Letters to the Editor
The Washington Post
1150 15th Street, NW
Washington, DC  20071

Dear Editor,

It was refreshing to read that former State Department officials stationed in Turkey are calling for the U.S. government to get tough with Turkey (“The United States needs to tell Turkey to Change Course,” Jan. 23). For far too long U.S. policy toward Turkey has been one of appeasement and double standard.

Turkey has never practiced the rule of law domestically. It certainly does not practice it with its neighbors.  Turkey is an unreliable ally for U.S. interests in the eastern Mediterranean for several reasons.  It has a cozy relationship with Iran, supports Hamas to the detriment of our strong ally Israel, and meddles in Syria and Egypt.  Turkey also illegally occupies EU-member nation Cyprus and commits provocative acts that violate the sovereignty of fellow NATO and U.S. ally, Greece. Furthermore, Turkey has threatened economic interests as Cyprus and Israel explore hydrocarbon reserves within their Economic Exclusive Zones with the help of a U.S. company.

The Obama Administration must change the United States’ long-standing policy of appeasement with Turkey and demand it respect democratic values, institutions, and the rule of law or else there will be strong consequences.   This approach will serve the best interests of Turkey and the U.S.

  

Sincerely,

 

Nick Larigakis
President
American Hellenic Institute
1220 16th Street, NW
Washington, DC  20036
nlarigakis@ahiworld.org
202-785-8430