"Led by Democrat Rhode Island State Senator Leonidas Raptakis and Republican Wyoming State Senator Stephan Pappas and a group of eleven bipartisan Hellenic-American elected officials from across the United States have signed and sent letters to the Vice Mayor Stratos Amigdalos of the Greek island of Kastellorizo and also communicated their message to South Aegean Governor George Hatzimarkos, expressing their support for the community in the face of Turkish threats in the region." Read more from Hellenic News click/tap here.
"NEW YORK –New York State Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis and Rhode Island State Senator Leonidas (Lou) Raptakis urged the European Union and the United States to help Greece as Turkey has sent a flood of refugees to the border. Assemblywoman Malliotakis and Sen. Raptakis on March 2 released the following statement concerning the situation:
The U.S. government needs to oppose this action in the strongest terms possible.
“Every nation has the right to secure its borders. That is true for both the U.S. and Greece. Both nations have long, proud histories of showing compassion toward immigrants and refugees. However, they must also have the ability to control the flow of immigration and know who is entering their country for security, health and economic reasons." Read the full story at The National Herald.
To see proactive dialogue between the two nations the United States and Greece. It was discussed that this is only part of the comprehensive approach that will be required to generate meaningful change in Turkey. ..."We urge the U.S. Senate to follow suit in taking up this legislation and sending a unified message to Turkey – that the Erdogan regime’s continued acts of aggression and provocation will not be tolerated. The sanctions contained in this legislation are the only way to force Turkey to reconsider the belligerent and hostile path it has chosen to follow in the region. The overwhelming bipartisan vote this measure received in the House should be a powerful reminder to every Senator that allowing Turkey to continue to play the role of a chaos agent in the Eastern Mediterranean is an unacceptable outcome for the security interests of the United States." State Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis (R-New York) and State Senator Lou Raptakis (D-Rhode Island) wrote the above commentary. Read the full article at The National Herald.
Greek Language / Yianopoulos Tribute
In St Augustine, Florida, regarding community outreach and Greek education - Honoring the founder, Ioannis Giannopoulos, of the 1st Greek school in the America in 1760. The January 22, 2020 event's ceremony facilitated the transfer of the statue of Yiannopoulos to the United States from Tripoli, Greece. Present were Federation of Hellenic-American Educators President Stella Kokolis, Prometheus Association President Meropi Kyriakou, and Rhode Island’s Greek-American State Senator Leonidas Raptakis. "The bust of Ioannis Giannopoulos will travel to St. Augustine, Florida on March 7, 2020. It should be noted that the event is part of the series of events commemorating the 200th anniversary of the Revolution of 1821." Click/tap on graphics to see the videos and read The National Herald articles...
TAMPA, FL – January 5, 2020 – Prime Minister of Greece Kyriakos Mitsotakis attended the AHEPA Epiphany Grand Banquet at Tampa Bay's The Innisbrook Resort. In addition the referring to the Mediterranean's political climate the Greek Prime Minister stressed the importance and key areas of the American Greek community’s practical relationship with Greece.
Present were Mareva Mitsotakis, Stelios Petsas, Haris Lalakos, Alexandra Papadopoulou, Rep. Gus Bilirakis, Rep. Michael Bilirakis, RI State Sen. Leonidas Raptakis, Tarpon Springs Mayor Chris Alahouzos, and Pancretan Association of America President Eleftherios Dramitinos. Read the complete story at and by: The National Herald.
Delphi Economic Forum IV: February 28 - March 3, 2019
THE CHALLENGE OF INCLUSIVE GROWTH
Jimmy Athanasopoulos, CFO, EuroEnergy; Chairman, Envolve Entrepreneurship, Greece
Mike Manatos, President, Manatos & Manatos, USA
Dr. Nicholas Pappas, Chairman, Bank of Sydney; President, The Hellenic Initiative Australia
Peter J. Poulos, Executive Director, The Hellenic Initiative, USA
Intervention: Leonidas Raptakis, Senator, Rhode Island State Senate, USA
Chair: Emanuel Rouvelas, Partner, K&L Gates, USA
New & Politics from and by the Delphi Forum:
"Delphi Economic Forum IV took place between 28th of February and 3rd of March 2019, identifying the main global trends, assessing their implications and reviewing the resulting challenges and policy options that decision-makers of the wider Eastern Mediterranean Region are confronted with. Moreover, it placed Greece’s need for structural reforms and new leadership strategies under the microscope, with the aim to explore a new model of governance. The main theme of Delphi Economic Forum IV was The Challenge of Inclusive Growth".
At the SS Hellas Liberty Museum in Piraeus Port, Greece -
Ambassador Geoffery Pyatt stated “the Greek shipping industry serves as a stabilizing force in the region that is grappling with a range of geostrategic challenges.” State Senator Lou Raptakis spoke about the heroic effort, in which he and others present that night played major roles, to find a Liberty ship. The ship found was 1 of only 3 remaining in the world converted into the museum. Raptakis also noted that his father made 11 Atlantic voyages during the war before settling in the USA and enlisting in the US Army. For details: Read/Click/Tap Here: Greek Memorial Planned. Initial story by Kathimerini, The Trust Project.
"Another notable step, which Senator Lou Raptakis actively supported, was the fact that in March 2018, the State University of New York and the National Merchant Marine Academy of Hydra signed an agreement for student exchanges between the two institutions. This is a fantastic initiative, and is a great example of the kind of educational partnerships that we will continue to grow. Our governments also recently reached an agreement on the mutual recognition of seamen certificates, and Minister Kouvelis and I have agreed that we will seek to build even more on cooperation between the U.S. and Hellenic coast guards. And as I was arriving tonight, I was thrilled to be greeted by a few of the cadets from the Hydra Academy, who are in a position to benefit from this exchange program." Click/Tap Here to read the full story - Ambassador’s Remarks at East Mediterranean Business & Cultural Alliance February 8, 2019 by the official website of the U.S. Embassy in Greece.
ABOUT THE Author
A long-time member of the World Hellenic Inter-Parliamentary Association, Sen. Raptakis has worked on a range of RI legislation policy issues impacting not only Greece but many European nations. Please like the Senator on Facebook.