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New York’s Mayor Adams Attends Summit in Athens

ATHENS – In the presence of more than 25 mayors and other distinguished guests, the two-day 2022 Mayors Summit Against Antisemitism was held November 29-30 at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Athens, hosted by the Mayor of Athens Kostas Bakoyannis. The Mayor of New York, Eric Adams, was also present.

The Summit is co-organized by the City of Athens, the Combat Antisemitism Movement (CAM), and the Centre for Jewish Impact, in cooperation with the Jewish Federations of North America.

On Wednesday evening, a dinner was held during which the opening of the Summit was marked by the presence and speeches of the President of the Republic, Katerina Sakellaropoulou, and the Vice President of the Greek Government, Panagiotis Pikrammenos, while greetings were given by, among others, Bakoyannis, Adams, and the CEO of the Combat Antisemitism Movement (CAM), Sacha Roytman.

New York City Mayor Erik Adams and Mayor of Athens Kostas Bakoyannis sign a twinning agreement in the city hall of Athens, on Thursday, Dec. 1, 2022. (Photo by Eurokinissi/Vasilis Rebapis)
New York City Mayor Erik Adams and Mayor of Athens Kostas Bakoyannis sign a twinning agreement in the city hall of Athens, on Thursday, Dec. 1, 2022. (Photo by Eurokinissi/Vasilis Rebapis)

It is worth noting that Adams was honored by CAM for his dedication to the fight against anti-Semitism and intolerance, and a plaque was presented to Enes Kanter Freedom, activist and international basketball player, for his active work in defense of Human Rights and Freedom.

New York City Mayor Erik Adams, left, and Mayor of Athens Kostas Bakoyannis, sign a twinning agreement in the city hall of Athens, on Thursday, Dec. 1, 2022. The two mayors signed an agreement to twin the cities of New York and Athens. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

During his introduction on Thursday morning, Adams emphasized that, “going back and forth is not progress. What matters is to build a global alliance,” with the ultimate goal of “building a better planet for our children and raising better children for our planet.”

Adams noted, “we have the largest population of Jews outside Israel, over one million,” and said that his goal is “to bring down the walls that divide us.” The Mayor added that the fight against anti-Semitism and intolerance is a fight against those pathologies that have “hijacked our values, putting gain before stability.”

Adams met with Bakoyannis at Athens City Hall, where the two men signed a Twinning Agreement between Athens and New York, followed by the scheduled meeting of the two mayors with the President Sakellaropoulou at the Presidential Palace. The President said, “at a time when antisemitism is rising worldwide, it is an ethical obligation every day to turn memory into action, [thereby] cultivating historical knowledge.”

The meeting of the two mayors with the President Sakellaropoulou at the Presidential Palace on Thursday, December 1, 2022. (GIANNIS PANAGOPOULOS/EUROKINISSI)
The meeting of the two mayors with the President Sakellaropoulou at the Presidential Palace on Thursday, December 1, 2022. (GIANNIS PANAGOPOULOS/EUROKINISSI)

The afternoon presentations of the Summit took place at the historic Etz Hayim Synagogue and around 6:30 PM all participants were invited by Bakoyannis to go to Syntagma Square for the annual lighting of the Christmas tree.

The Summit was to conclude on Thursday evening with a formal dinner at the King George Hotel with the signing of a joint declaration by the mayors to take action to combat anti-Semitism.

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