The dynamism of the Greek Community in Canada and the commitment of the Greek State to strengthen its ties with Hellenism Abroad was emphasized by the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Giorgos Kotsiras.

“The enthusiastic reception of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis by the Greeks of Canada, their passion and selfless love for Greece, their dedication to the preservation of our cultural heritage, their key role in the development of Greek-Canadian relations and in promoting the image of Greece of our country abroad, give us self-confidence and intensify our determination to bring the Greek Expatriates even closer to the metropolitan center”, said Mr. Kotsiras.

The Deputy Minister participated in the official visit of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis to Canada and in the celebrations of the Community for the anniversary of March 25 and had a series of contacts with Community, ecclesiastical and educational institutions.

In particular, as part of the celebratory events for the anniversary of March 25, Mr. Kotsiras laid a wreath at the Cenotaph of the Municipality of Laval and addressed an honorary dinner hosted by the Greek Community of Greater Montreal. In his greeting, the Deputy Minister characterized the relationship of the Greek State with Hellenism Abroad as “structural” and “existential”. “We must all, from whatever position we serve the national interest, take care to keep this relationship alive”, he emphasized and referred in particular to three initiatives that reflect the Government’s practical interest in the Diaspora: first, the Strategic Plan of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Hellenism Abroad – “a single, coherent policy for Diasporas”, secondly, in upgrading consular services with the use of digital technology and, thirdly, in removing restrictions on the voting of Greeks abroad and on postal voting, a ” huge step for democracy and equality”, as he said. Mr. Kotsiras praised the contribution of the Greeks of Canada to the defense and dissemination of our national positions and to the positive course of Greece in recent years. “Greece is progressing, it is entering a new era with greater self-confidence, and you all contributed to this effort,” he said characteristically.

The Deputy Minister attended the official Doxology at the Holy Church of the Annunciation of the Theotokos and the great parade of the Community in Montreal with the Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and the Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau, participated in the extended talks of the Prime Minister with his Canadian counterpart and watched the speeches of the Prime Minister at the Omogenia events in Montreal and Toronto.

During his stay in Canada, the Deputy Minister met with the President of the Hellenic Community of Greater Montreal, Georgios Tsoukas, the President of the Hellenic Community of Toronto, Betty Skoutakis, the President of the Hellenic Congress of Quebec, Sotirios Antipa, and the President of the Hellenic Canadian Congress, Theodoros Spoilage. Mr. Kotsiras pointed out the important contribution of expatriate organizations to the promotion of the Greek element in Canada and his pursuit of strengthening communication and cooperation with them.

Also, the Deputy Minister visited the Holy Archdiocese of Canada, where he was received by the Most Reverend Archbishop of Canada Mr. Sotirios. At the meeting, Mr. Kotsiras praised the multi-level, social and educational work of the Archdiocese and its key role in rallying Hellenism.

In Montreal, Mr. Kotsiras visited the day school of the “Socrates-Demosthenes” Community and in Toronto the Greek Orthodox Day School of the Archdiocese “Metamorfosi”, underlining the support of the Greek State for Greek-language education and the possibilities of utilizing modern digital tools, such as the online Greek language learning platform

Finally, the Deputy Minister had meetings with Professor Anastasios Anastasiadis, holder of the Chair of Modern Greek Studies “Frixos V. Papachristidis” at McGill University in Montreal, with Professor Sakis Geka, holder of the Chair of Modern Greek History of the Hellenic Heritage Foundation at York University in Toronto , and with the President of the Hellenic Scholarship Foundation of Quebec, Yiannis Hatzinikolaou. Mr. Kotsiras expressed the support of the Greek State for the study of the Greek Diaspora, the promotion of Greek Studies and the networking of academic bodies and emphasized the importance of rewarding the excellence of young expatriates, who constitute a new generation of worthy ambassadors of Greece internationally .