The Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras spoke of the difficult battles Greece has fought, at the banquet that was held at the Greek Consulate General in New York in his honor on Tuesday evening. In discussing the crisis and the need to reduce the unbearable and unsustainable public debt that was accumulated all these years, Mr. Tsipras underlined that the Greek government found ‘friendlier ears’ in Washington than in Brussels.

Mr. Tsipras argued that Greek expatriates and the diasporic community are “the best ambassadors of Hellenism in the USA” and thanked them for their ceaseless efforts in defending the country’s national interests all these years. The Greek PM pledged to take advantage of their efforts and actions in order to further promote Greece’s efforts and goals.

In discussing the ongoing financial crisis in Greece, Mr. Tsipras recognized that the Greek diaspora and expatriates are concerned about the developments in Greece – “more so than us who live in Greece”, he added. Mr. Tsipras explained that “the Greek people fell victim to choices that resulted in the gradual loss of sovereignty, which lead to the need for lending that consequently resulted in the implementation of policies which in recent years, which weakened the production base and economy”.

Regarding the ongoing crises around Greece – such as the conflicts in Ukraine, Syria and Libya – the Prime Minister argued that “as Greeks we are well aware what cruel exile means” and that “we must host [the refugees] and accommodate them, despite our limited capacity”. Mr. Tsipras claimed that despite the financial and refugee crisis, the Greek people must not neglect their humanity and moral values.

During the banquet, the Greek Prime Minister also referred to the Cypriot dispute and spoke of the need to “support the efforts of the Cypriot government in finding a sustainable and fair solution” adding that “there can be no fair solution without the departure of occupation forces from Cyprus”.