Macedonia Rally in NYC Draws Large Crowd (Pics & Vid)

Greek-American Community's New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)

NEW YORK – Greeks from all across the United States filled the Dag Hammarskjold Plaza on 47th Street between 1st and 2nd Avenues in Manhattan, across from the United Nations, on March 18 to rally for Macedonia with blue and white flags waving. The message was clear for all those present, Macedonia is Greece. The Federation of Hellenic Societies of Greater New York, the Pan-Macedonian Association, and the Hellenic Congress of America organized the event to bring attention to the issue that has lingered on, unresolved, since the break-up of Yugoslavia in 1991. The issue has recently been in the news as the governments of Greece and its northern neighbor, the Former Yugoslav Republic, have stepped up talks with UN Special Representative Matthew Nimetz to finally resolve the name issue.

Greeks from the New York tri-state area were joined by their fellow Greeks from Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Philadelphia, Houston, San Francisco, Washington, and Montreal to show their unity on the non-negotiable use of the name Macedonia by any other nation except Greece. Braving the cold temperatures in New York City, Greeks from Florida, Ohio, Utah, and California also joined the protest against the distortion of history perpetuated by Greece’s northern neighbor. Many carried signs that read “Macedonia is Greece” along with the flags of Greece and the United States. Other signs made more pointed statements including “Stop Selling Greece.”

Ο "Ε.Κ." ζωντανά στο συλλαλητήριο της Ομογένειας για τη Μακεδονία στη Νέα Υόρκη…Διαβάστε περισσότερα http://bit.ly/2FPJ60I

Posted by Εθνικός Κήρυξ / The National Herald on Sunday, March 18, 2018

The rally began with the singing of the National Anthems of Greece and the United States. Many among the speakers noted the powerful role the diaspora has played in the past for Greece and will continue as long as is necessary to help the homeland. Stelios Kirimlis- President of the Pan Macedonian Association spoke about the long history of Macedonia and its inherent Greek-ness. Dimitris Filippides- Vice President of the Pan-Macedonian Association who presented the event noted that the slogan should be “Ellas, Ellas, Macedonia” which was quickly adopted by the enthusiastic crowd.

His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios Geron of America who spoke not only as the Archbishop, but as a Macedonian born and raised in Thessaloniki, the capital of Macedonia. He added that his family’s history in Macedonia goes back 300 years and noted that since he became archbishop, he has met with every U.S. president, Clinton, Bush, Obama, and Trump, for the annual celebration of March 25th, Greek Independence Day, at the White House and every president has said the same thing to him, “I know what you’re going to say- the Patriarchate, Macedonia, and Cyprus” and he said, “If you know what I am going to say, then why don’t you do something.”

Archbishop Demetrios then referred to today’s Bible reading about having faith in God and added that God is with us on this issue. There is only one Macedonia.

Ο "Ε.Κ." ζωντανά στο συλλαλητήριο της Ομογένειας για τη Μακεδονία στη Νέα Υόρκη…Διαβάστε περισσότερα http://bit.ly/2FPJ60I

Posted by Εθνικός Κήρυξ / The National Herald on Sunday, March 18, 2018

The Mayor of the Athens municipality of Marousi and president of the Central Union of Municipalities of Greece (KEDE) George Patoulis was one of the participants from Greece. Also in attendance, from Crete, Vangelis Grammatikakis who participated in the protest rallies in Greece for Macedonia, and noted that the Cretans are always in the forefront of the fight and fought in the past to keep Macedonia free and Greek and they will continue to do so. Grammatikakis recited a mantinada, noting that if you love freedom you cannot rely on foreigners to win it for you, you must win it yourself. Federation of Hellenic Societies of Greater New York President Petros Galatoulas, told The National Herald that the rally was blessed by God as it was conducted on a sunny though cold day. He added that the love of the Greek-American community for Greece and the determination to fight for Macedonia lessened he cold and New York and the whole world recognize that Macedonia is Greek and that no one has the right to hijack history and steal the name.

Federation of Hellenic-American Societies of New England President Vasilios “Bill” Kafkas told TNH that the contingent from Boston and all Massachusetts set out very early in the morning with ten buses filled with supporters as well as many more who followed in their own cars to attend the rally in New York. In his speech, he said that the temperature in Boston when they left was 16 degrees Fahrenheit, -8 Celsius, but that could not keep them from the rally since everyone must understand that the Greek people are unified on this issue. He noted the rallies in Athens and Thessaloniki, and “we’ve been to Washington, do we have to go to the Greek Parliament, too?” to which many in the crowd responded, “Yes!”

Pancyprian President Philip Christopher also spoke movingly about the issue, “My fellow Hellenes, we are here as American citizens, we have an obligation… to Greece and Cyprus, we are by your side. The Greek politicians are ready to give up. We are not ready to give up. Macedonia is Greek. We are not ready to give up the Aegean islands to Turkey. We have to fight in Washington, we have to fight for the Macedonia name.”

Ο "Ε.Κ." ζωντανά στο συλλαλητήριο της Ομογένειας για τη Μακεδονία στη Νέα Υόρκη…Διαβάστε περισσότερα http://bit.ly/2FPJ60I

Posted by Εθνικός Κήρυξ / The National Herald on Sunday, March 18, 2018

Also among the speakers, Ret. Navy Commander Demetries Grimes who is currently running for Florida’s 26th Congressional District, New York State Assemblymember Nicole Malliotakis, European Union of Women Greek Section President Aphrodite Bletas and Vice President Evi Tatoulis, Dr. George Liakeas- President of the Hellenic Medical Society, Nancy Papaioannou- Atlantic Bank President and Chair of this year’s New York Greek Independence parade, New York State Senator Michael Gianaris, Rep. Carolyn Maloney- co-chair of the Congressional Caucus on Hellenic Issues, and AHEPA Supreme Treasurer George Horiates.

Dr. Sam Chekwas, born in Nigeria, studied in Thessaloniki, and said he lived the best years of his life there in the Macedonian capital where he became a son of Alexander the Great.

The event concluded with the singing of Ti Ypermacho, the final kontakion of the Akathistos Hymn to the Theotokos and the Greek National Anthem.

Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)
Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)
Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)
Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)
Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)
Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)

Ο "Ε.Κ." ζωντανά στο συλλαλητήριο της Ομογένειας για τη Μακεδονία στη Νέα Υόρκη…Διαβάστε περισσότερα http://bit.ly/2FPJ60I

Posted by Εθνικός Κήρυξ / The National Herald on Sunday, March 18, 2018

Ο "Ε.Κ." ζωντανά στο συλλαλητήριο της Ομογένειας για τη Μακεδονία στη Νέα Υόρκη…Διαβάστε περισσότερα http://bit.ly/2FPJ60I

Posted by Εθνικός Κήρυξ / The National Herald on Sunday, March 18, 2018

Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)
Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)
Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)
Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)

Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)
Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)
Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)
Greek-American Community’s New York Rally for Macedonia, March 18, 2018. (Photo by TNH/Costas Bej)

2 Comments

  1. I was there and saw many Jewish faces. I was also at the two Jewish rallies against Persian nukes – but the interests of big oil prevailed. Muslims do not believe in ever returning lands they hold or held: There are still deeds in Istanbul for Greek and Israeli properties because they plan on taking them back eventually. Why does the “west” embrace barbarians, the way Gibbon embraced the Turks? Why shouldn’t ancient civilizations be able to reclaim their birthright? Constantinople, Epirus and Cyprus are exactly the same issue as Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria. Why does the west embrace Rohynga, Tsetsens, Bosniacs, Mughals, Uyghurs and Turks, the entire scourge of Tatary? Obama even refused to embrace the Catholic son of his father’s homeland’s founder for fear of offending muslims.

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