Jewish Political Brief June 3, 2013: Greek Foreign Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos Addresses AJC Global Forum

 

JEWISH POLITICAL BRIEF

JEWISH POLITICAL BRIEF: JEWISH NEWS

Greek Foreign Minister Addresses AJC Global Forum

Source: AJC, 6-3-13

H.E. Dimitris Avramopoulos Foreign Minister of Greece

H.E. Dimitris Avramopoulos

“Greece will never allow hate to grow and spread. Hate will be confronted and stopped,” said Foreign Minister Avramopoulos, referring to rising anti-Semitism in Europe. FULL SPEECH

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Israel Political Brief May 29, 2013: PM Benjamin Netanyahu Praises Greek – Israeli Similarities

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF


ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

Netanyahu Praises Greek – Israeli Similarities

Source: Arutz Sheva, 5-29-13

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met this evening (Wednesday) with Greece’s Foreign Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos. The Prime Minister stated “the colors of our flags are similar, which is not surprising, since Jerusalem and Athens are the foundations….READ MORE

Israeli President Shimon Peres thanks Greek president for stopping flotilla

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

Source: JTA, 7-11-11

Israeli President Shimon Peres thanked his Greek counterpart, Karolos Papoulias, for his country’s help in stopping a flotilla bound for Gaza.

Peres hosted Papoulias on Monday in Jerusalem for a reception and a working meeting.

“I genuinely thank you for fulfilling the directives of the Secretary-General of the United Nations by stopping the flotilla,”  Peres told Papoulias. “I thank you for not allowing people interested in violating the law and disrupting order to reach Gaza, which is ruled by a terror organization.

“Greece, in an impressive manner, showed the U.N. that she stands ready to assist. Your contribution to lower tensions benefits the entire region as well as Gaza itself.  You acted legally and carefully, and I thank you for your personal involvement in this matter.”

Peres called the Greek president’s visit “the start of the opening of a new chapter in Greece-Israel relations. Both of our nations share an ancient past, and I believe we share a great future.”

He also thanked the country for sending firefighting planes and firefighters to help in extinguishing last year’s Carmel forest fire.

During their meeting the two leaders discussed strengthening relations between Greece and Israel in a number of areas, particularly diplomatic and trade relations, Peres’ office told journalists.

Greece Halts Gaza Flotilla Bound to Israel

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

Greece puts halt to Gaza flotilla in a win for Israel

Source: CS Monitor, 7-1-11

The Greek coastguard escorted a US boat seeking to join the Gaza flotilla back to port and said it will stop all other attempted departures. It looks like a big diplomatic victory for Benjamin Netanyahu.

A pro-Palestinian activist plays a trumpet as others hold banners on their boat named ‘Audacity of Hope’ moored in Perama, near Athens Thursday.

Darko Bandic/AP

A boat carrying a contingent of US activists seeking to join a flotilla of protesters against Israel‘s blockade of the Gaza Strip were turned back by armed Greek commandos about 30 miles out of Athens today, in a major blow to the group and an apparent diplomatic victory for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The US boat was carrying about 50 Americans, among them Pulitzer Prize-winning author Alice Walker and 85-year-old Holocaust survivor Hedy Epstein. As of the late evening in Greece, the boat was being detained at a Greek coastguard port….READ MORE

Related stories

Israel Advocacy Group Forces Delay in Gaza-Bound Flotilla

Source: NYT, 6-28-11

The departure of a pro-Palestinian flotilla of international ships with plans to break the Israeli naval blockade of Gaza has been delayed, in large part due to the efforts of an Israeli advocacy group, both sides said Tuesday.

Greek authorities have held two of the ships docked here in recent days, including an American vessel, after the Israeli advocacy group, Shurat HaDin-Israel Law Center, filed a complaint to the Greek coast guard suggesting that seven of the ships might be lacking insurance or improperly registered.

Ten ships are slated to head toward Gaza this week, in a challenge to Israel’s naval embargo of the Palestinian coastal strip governed by Hamas, the militant group that opposes Israel’s right to exist. All the vessels are insured and have been certified as seaworthy, said Adam Shapiro, a coordinator and spokesman for the flotilla….READ MORE

Activists, Israeli Navy prepare for flotilla bound for Gaza

Source: JTA, 6-28-11

Israel’s Navy is preparing to intercept the pro-Palestinian flotilla due to set sail for the Gaza Strip from Mediterranean ports later this week.

Commandos from the Israeli Navy’s elite Shayetet 13 unit have spent weeks preparing to stop the flotilla from reaching Gaza, including practicing new ways to quickly board the ships’ upper decks and how to use water cannons and other non-lethal riot control methods.

The Navy wants to avoid a repeat of  the violence that occurred when Israeli commandos boarded a ship in last year’s flotilla to Gaza. Nine Turkish activists, including a dual Turkish-American citizen, were killed in clashes with the commandos aboard the Mavi Marmara in May 2010.

This year’s flotilla activists, whose stated goal is to break Israel’s maritime blockade of the Hamas-run coastal strip, have attended workshops on the use of passive resistance tactics. The activists also have been trained to transmit information from the ships until the last minute and keep video chips hidden from boarding Israeli soldiers, according to a blog post by flotilla participant Medea Benjamin.

Unnamed Israeli officials told Israeli media outlets that some flotilla participants hope to kill Israeli soldiers and are planning to bring aboard bags of the chemical sulfur to pour it on soldiers as they attempt to board the ships. Israeli officials have identified at least two participants in the flotilla as having ties to Hamas.

However, a flotilla organizer, Israeli expatriate Dror Feiler, told journalists that flotilla participants have signed a declaration of nonviolence. Feiler said that dangerous chemicals would not be allowed on board flotilla vessels.

“If Israel suspects anyone, it should provide us with information so we can stop him,” he told Israel Army Radio Tuesday morning. “Violent people are not permitted to take part in the flotilla.”

The flotilla is expected to be a smaller version of last year’s, with some 10 ships, including two cargo ships, carrying about 500 activists reportedly set to take part, instead of the at least 15 ships carrying thousands of activists originally planned.

Earlier this month, the Turkish Islamic charity IHH, which helped organize last year’s flotilla with the Free Gaza Movement, withdrew the participation of the Mavi Marmara in this year’s flotilla. The IHH, which is considered a terrorist organization by Israel and the European Union, said the ship did not gain necessary approval from Turkish port authorities for technical reasons.

The flotilla ran into further problems this week.

The departure date of flotilla ships from Greek ports was pushed off from the originally scheduled Tuesday launch due to a nationwide strike. Meanwhile, one ship’s propeller was cut off in what flotilla organizers are calling sabotage….READ MORE

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