Mitsotakis tells US Congress ‘Don’t forget Cyprus’

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Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis urged a joint session of the US Congress not to forget Cyprus during a historical address.

The address was received by Nancy Pelosi, Vice President Kamala Harris, and elected representatives with applause.

Mitsotakis is the first Greek Prime Minister to address Congress.

He referred to the Cyprus issue, the war in Ukraine, and Turkey’s air violations over the Greek islands while making it clear that Putin will not succeed.

“I ask you, esteemed members of Congress, not to forget an open wound that has caused Hellenism unending pain over the past 48 years.

“I am referring to the invasion and subsequent division of Cyprus.”

Mitsotakis stressed the Cyprus issue “has to be resolved in accordance with international law and in line with the relevant decisions of the United Nations Security Council.”

“As I told President Biden yesterday, nobody can, and nobody will accept a two-state solution in Cyprus.”

Referring to Ukraine, the Greek Prime Minister said: “We stand by Ukraine against Putin’s aggression. We delivered humanitarian aid.

“We supported the Ukrainians with weapons to help them defend their homeland.

“And we have welcomed, with open arms, refugees who have fled their homeland in search of safety for themselves and their families.”

Putin, he added, “is striving to create a world in which power is for the strong state but not the small.

“A world in which territorial claims are made on the basis of historical fantasies and enforced by aggression, rather than decided by peace treaties. A world in which armies rather than diplomats settle disputes.”

“He will not succeed. He must not succeed. The language of resentment, revisionism and imperial nostalgia shall not prevail,” Mitsotakis said.

Referring to Turkey, he said: “Greece is a peace-seeking democracy that always extends a hand of friendship to our neighbours.

“I want to be absolutely clear. We will not accept open acts of aggression that violate our sovereignty and our territorial rights. These include overflights over Greek islands, which must stop immediately.”

He said, “the last thing that NATO needs at a time when our focus is on helping Ukraine defeat Russia’s aggression is another source of instability on NATO’s southeastern flank.

“And I ask you to take this into account when you make defence procurement decisions concerning the Eastern Mediterranean.”

Mitsotakis spoke of the ties between Greece and the USA since the Greek revolution.

“Replace the word Greece with Ukraine, and you will see the similarities,” he said, adding that “as in Mariupol, so in Missolonghi in 1826, the defenders of the city repulsed one attack after another before surrendering.”