Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Fanoulla Argyrou and Leonidas Leonidou reply to Jack Straw

Mr Jack Straw, MP
House of Commons
London SW1A 00A
Dear Mr Straw

In your letter to The Times (8.11.2010) you presented no tangible arguments for your support of Turkey’s accession to the European Union.

The spirit of your letter and your subsequent radio threat of partition unless the Republic of Cyprus withdraws objections to Turkey’s EU accession amount to a gross blackmail reminiscent of colonial times practices.

In pursuing your strong pro-Turkish stance, during your time as Foreign secretary and currently as an MP, not only you undermine issues such as the military invasion and occupation of 40% of Cyprus, the ethnic cleansing and 36 years of violations of fundamental human rights and liberties by Turkey, but you also suggest a reward for the instigator of these injustices.

I hope you reflect on these points and reconsider your one-sided, biased and unjust viewpoint.

Yours sincerely,

Leonidas Leonidou
President of EKEKA
(Federation of Cypriot Refugees in the UK)
3 Elmwood Avenue
London N13 4HG


Mr Jack Straw, MP
House of Commons
London SW1A 00A

Dear Mr. Straw,                                            London 10.11.2010

Your article in The Times 8 November 2010

There are indeed no ifs and no buts in Turkey’s accession negotiation process.
Your despicable article is in contempt of Law and Justice as we know it in order to appease Turkey. From one hand you are actually calling upon the British Government to commit illegal acts in defiance and violation of United Nations resolutions (541 of 1983 and 550 of 1984) which is unthinkable especially coming from a Member of Parliament  through a national newspaper, and from the other you are indeed “forgetting” that Cyprus is no longer a British colony to mess about as you please, your jurisdiction and free hand to cut and join has long gone since 1959…

Turkey’s accession negotiations are a totally separate issue. If Turkey wishes her application to proceed smoothly she has to abide with the rules of the game. Turkey has not fulfilled her obligations expected of her and the EU will not proceed with her entry negotiations unless she does fulfil in full those obligations. As simple as that. No ifs and no buts. Therefore it is not Cyprus’s fault, another member of the EU, if Turkey is stubbornly refusing to meet those demands one of which is the paramount need and obligation to recognise the Republic of Cyprus.
There are no two stories to the Cyprus situation as you wrongly claim. But only one and very clear one – Turkey invaded Cyprus in 1974 and still is there occupying half of the Republic of Cyprus, an EU member, depriving 200,000 Greek Cypriot refugees from returning to their stolen land and properties and in violation and contempt of numerous UN and EU resolutions calling for her to withdraw her troops and 160,000 (or so) settlers she imported into the occupied area.  No solution without restitution of our properties in the occupied.
Your article is full of prejudice against the Greek Cypriots and their plight for justice. It is a venomous outburst which has its roots back in 2004 when you were furious with the 76% NO of the Greek Cypriots who overwhelmingly and DEMOCRATICALLY rejected through the referendum imposed on them, the racist apartheid solution of the so called “Annan Plan”. Which was based on the Turkish demand of bizonal bicommunal federation.  And you vowed at that  meeting in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on the 26 of April 2004 to revenge the Greek Cypriots, late President Tassos Papadopoulos and the Republic of Cyprus for not bowing to your and to Turkish demands to commit suicide to please Turkish interests and ambitions.
Your article also appear with disrespect to two major London Court of Appeal decisions a) Apostolides v Orams and b) the very recent one (published The Times 9 November 2010) “Flight refusal justified”  when Lord Justice Richards rejected the Turkish appeal for direct flights to the occupied area in Cyprus. Lord Justice Richards said that the granting of permits sought by the “Kibris Turk hava Yollari and Another” would constitute a breach of the United Kingdom’s obligation to respect the rights of the Republic of Cyprus and would be unlawful.
Finally no need to repeat the Cyprus Spokesman’s response that your pro-Turkish article will affect the very existence of the British military bases in Cyprus.

Yours faithfully,

Fanoulla Argyrou
Researcher/Journalist and refugee from occupied Nicosia

c.c. Rt. Hon David Cameron MP, Prime Minister
c.c. Rt. Hon William Hague MP, Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary
Cyprus High Commission

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Reply to Financial Times for promoting Turkey's accession to the EU

Dear Sir,
It seems that you (i.e. FT newspaper) have taken it upon yourselves to promote Turkey to EU membership. And in doing so, you find it necessary to dismember Cyprus permanently.
A couple of examples from your relevant articles:
David Lidington MP : "we are the strongest supporter of Turkey’s accession to the European Union and are proud to be a leading advocate for Turkey in the EU." Nov. 13 2010
In the same article he refers to his prime minister in Turkey who said:
“…to make the case for Turkey’s membership of the EU. And to fight for it”.
“And it is not just the UK cheerleading for Turkey – on November 9 the Italian and Turkish foreign ministers published an article in Italy’s La Repubblica in support of Turkey’s EU ambitions.” continues Lidington.

Editorial:If the Turkish Cypriots asked for recognition of their state, it would be difficult for the UK to oblige, because London is bound by a 1960 treaty of guarantee not to promote partition. Other EU countries would also hesitate. But many states are impatient with the constant Greek Cypriot disruption of EU business on account of the Cyprus dispute. They believe Turkey’s rising geopolitical and economic importance makes it imperative to show Ankara that the EU will not be hostage to the Greek Cypriots for ever. Even Russia, a long-time friend of the Greek Cypriots, is signalling a possible change of course on account of its newly blossoming ties with Turkey.” November 12 2010

Editorial: “They should be making its case more forcibly. Pushing for the unblocking of more chapters would help. Ultimately, though, a way must be found to deal with the Cyprus problem, the chief obstacle. Admitting that country before it had resolved its dispute with Turkey was a grave error.” November 9 2010

The TURKEY 2010 PROGRESS REPORT of the European Commision is more than 100 pages long. It mentions a series of “progress” points made but with a very large number of qualifications on why Turkey is still not ready.
It contains about ten introductory sections the longest of which are
2.1. Democracy and the rule of law, 2.2. Human rights and the protection of minorities of about ten pages each. The rest are one or at most two pages long.
Just about one page is devoted on Cyprus within 2.3. Regional issues and international obligations.
Further, section 4. Ability to assume the obligations of membership consists of thirty-three chapters. Each of these is usually one or two pages long; occasionally three pages. Exceptions, however, form the following:
Chapter 19: Social policy and employment and Chapter 23: Judiciary and fundamental rights four and five pages respectively.
Various problems are mentioned quite frequently through the whole text, notably  the Kurdish issue, the Armenian genocide, rights of children, human rights in general and of course the Cyprus issue. However, one would hardly conclude that this is the major problem Turkey faces vis-à-vis her ascension to the EU.
To what then do we Cypriots owe your venom against us?
Well, there is a revealing footnote on p. 5 of this report:
“The decision sets out that negotiations will not be opened on eight chapters relevant to Turkey's restrictions regarding the Republic of Cyprus and no chapter will be provisionally closed until the Commission confirms that Turkey has fully implemented the Additional Protocol to the Association Agreement.”
Cyprus, despite its tiny size is a member of the EU and can block Turkey’s ascension forever. And the mighty Alvion – mind you toothless by now – cannot stand that. She – toothless and almost demented – perceives her interests to lie with Turkey. And she sheds crocodilian tears about the “isolated Turkish Cypriots”. Well, you should recall that Turkey invaded in the name of the Turkish Cypriots but today they are a minority within the occupied areas. About half of them refused the benevolence of mother Turkey. Just about eighty thousand remain, plus about forty thousand troops plus at least two hundred thousand settlers from Turkey. What kind of isolation is it then? why would people choose to come and live in isolation? or do they not choose, maybe?
As far as the other reasons, correctly mentioned in thee report but grossly underemphasized, none of the “great powers” really care. There is no Kurdistan to block Turkey’s entrance into the EU and the little Armenian state is not a member. Amnesty International and othe human rights organizations can give advice, can shout, can issue reports but they have no veto right.
Of course you are interested in the emerging markets of Turkey, but …well, did you read Mr. Davutoglu’s book? In Turkish it is called “Stratejik Derinlik. Türkiye uluslarasasi konumu” and it means “Strategic Depth. Turkey’s international position”. If you know Turkish or Greek you can read it, otherwise make sure it is translated into English. It is enlightening about what your favorite Neo-Ottoman islamists. You may draw the same conclusion I did: Turkey is more likel to become another Iran rather than a shield against it.
Her arrogance is, of course, greatly enhanced by the likes of you (e.g. Jack Straw and any other Foreign Office former or present official).
Mr. Davutoglu approves what the Kemalist have done in Cyprus (pp 278 -280 of the Greek translation):
“Even if there was not even a single Muslim Turk there, Turkey ought to maintain a Cyprus Issue. N country can remain indifferent to such an island which is situated in the heart of her vital space.”
On p. 200 he informs us of what the plans are for the Balkans. You do not have to guess, he spells it out himself, the same as in Cyprus:
“The two short-term and middle-term targets of the foreign policy of Turkey in the Balkans are the strengthening of Bosnia and Albania into a framework of stability and the creation of an international legal framework which will set the national minorities under its protection. In this international legal framework Turkey must continually seek to safeguard guarantees that would give her the right of intervening in the matters pertaining to the Islamic minorities in the Balkans. The legitimacy of the intervention in Cyprus, which constitutes an impressive example in contemporary times, was made possible within such a kind of legal framework.” (By the latter “legal framework” he means the Zurich-London Agreements of 1959 that created the Republic of Cyprus
Many European countries are skeptical about Turkey and do hide behind little Cyprus, but that does not mean that your arguments are correct. On the contrary, any Turkish policy against Cyprus was originated in your Foreign Office.
As an epilogue I want to mention that if any country became by mistake an EU member, that is your country and not Cyprus (have a look expel the UK).
 Yours sincerely,
F. Genas

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Human Rights Defender of Armenia to speak at the European Parliament, hold high-level meetings with EU institutions

Press Release

Human Rights Defender of Armenia to speak at the European Parliament, hold high-level meetings with EU institutions

Armen Harutyunyan, the Human Rights Defender (Ombudsman) of Armenia, will be in Brussels from November 15 to November 18, 2010, in order to meet with European Institutions. The visit is organized by AGBU Europe.

On the occasion of his visit, Mr Harutyunyan will address a special meeting of the European Parliament’s Delegation for Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. The meeting, which is open to observers, will be held on 15th November at 5:30pm to 6:30pm in the European Parliament.

Mr Harutyunyan will also speak at a round table of experts convened jointly by AGBU Europe and European Friends of Armenia on November 16 at 1pm and hold a debate with the Armenian community in Brussels in the evening of the 16th. These events will focus on the state of democracy and human rights in Armenia, particularly in the context of intensifying EU-Armenia relations, and on the role of the Human Rights Defender. A number of other meetings with EU Member of Parliament and officials have also been scheduled.

Armen Harutyunyan was elected first Human Rights Defender for 6 years in a vote of the National Assembly held on February 17, 2006 , as provided by article 83.1 of the Constitution of the Republic of Armenia. The mission of the Human Rights Defender is to investigate and formulate expert legal opinions on the actions of public authorities in Armenia and on the conformity of new legislation with the constitution and with human rights standards. His statements have provided a much-needed anchor for public debate on matters relating to democracy and the rule of law. The Ombudsman’s credibility and influence depend on his ability to remain loyal to his mandate and independent from political forces in Armenia.

The effective establishment institution of the Ombudsman in Armenia has been praised by the European Union on a number of occasions. The European Commission’s report on the European Neighbourhood Policy implementation progress for Armenia for 2009, for instance, stated that “the independence of the institution of the Human Rights Defender (HRDO) in the political system and its role for the protection of human rights was further strengthened. Overall, the trend in the number of complaints received by the HRDO is increasing, confirming the growing credibility of this institution”.

Mr Harutyunyan’s visit in Brussels is part of a series of events organized by AGBU Europe in the context of its work with the European institutions.
AGBU Europe is the European branch of the Armenian General Benevolent Union, the world's largest non-profit Armenian organization. AGBU Europe representation in Brussels carries out advocacy work with the EU institutions on issues related to culture, education and intercultural dialogue, on the EU’s relationship with the Republics of Armenia and Nagorno Karabagh and Turkey’s negociations to join the European Union. A series of seminars, round tables, meetings continue to be regularly organized in order to initiate and nurture strategic thinking in the AGBU Europe and the Armenian Diaspora on AGBU Europe’s interests and aspirations, on their relevance to the EU’s agenda and on the best way to achieve them in this context.

Friday, November 12, 2010

“Challenge Turkey’s misrepresentations” says Federation of British Cypriots President

A recent surge of one-sided media coverage in Britain which effectively endorses Turkey’s positions in relation to Cyprus and unfairly vilifies the Republic of Cyprus today prompted a call by the President of the National Federation of Cypriots in the UK for a redressing of the balance of the debate. Mr Peter Droussiotis urged the UK Cypriot community, as well as friends of the cause of a united Cyprus and the Cypriot community’s political allies in the UK, to redouble their efforts in countering misrepresentations aimed at absolving Turkey of its serious responsibilities in Cyprus.

Mr Droussiotis said:

“In recent days we have seen an apparently orchestrated campaign by the Turkish government, conducted through their friendly politicians and journalists via the British media, whose sole purpose is to exonerate Turkey of its crimes in relation to Cyprus. Shameless attempts are being made to frame the Cyprus problem in a manner that portrays the victim of Turkey’s aggression on the island – the Cypriot people – as the guilty party.

“This has been the backdrop to relentless efforts by Turkey, and those who champion blindly its membership of the European Union, to push for outcomes that legitimise virtually all of the grave consequences of Turkey’s illegal invasion and 36 year old military occupation of the northern part of the island.

“I call upon all Cypriots in the UK – a sizeable voice within the electorate – to support the Federation in its efforts to counter Turkey’s propaganda. We must all urge our elected representatives in the House of Commons, to speak out for justice in Cyprus and to work with us for a free and reunited island. I ask our friends in Parliament to turn up the volume on Cyprus. We must ensure that deliberate misrepresentations in the press are countered by the collective response of those who believe in a peaceful, truly independent and united Cyprus for the benefit of all Cypriots.”

Citing the critical nature of the ongoing negotiations in Cyprus and at the UN next week as a factor for needing to provide redress, Mr Droussiotis called on British Cypriots to write to their MPs demanding support and to write in response to media articles that misrepresented the aims of the Republic of Cyprus in seeking a truly reunited island.

In doing so, he underlined several points that recent media coverage had overlooked:

• The essence of the Cyprus problem is one of invasion and occupation by a foreign power, not merely an inter-communal dispute, as Turkey would like to portray it

• Turkey’s total and continuing disregard of numerous UN and EU resolutions as well as many judgments by the European Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights

• Turkey’s illegal policy of colonisation of the occupied northern part of the island through the mass transfer of its own nationals, as part of a deliberate strategy to change the demography of the island

• Turkey’s deliberate destruction of the cultural and religious heritage of the island

• Turkey’s refusal to investigate the fate of people, including children, who went missing during its military invasion even in cases where such people are known to have been captured alive by the Turkish army

• Turkey’s refusal to abide by agreements it has already signed with the European Union in relation to Cyprus

• The fact that Turkish Cypriots on the island enjoy full rights as citizens of the Republic of Cyprus and, therefore, as citizens of the European Union

• The overwhelming majority of Cypriots want, and are committed to the struggle for, a free, united Cyprus but know that this cannot be achieved for as long as Turkey refuses to give up control of the area it occupies.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Letter to Jack Straw by the Movement for Freedom & Justice in Cyprus

Nicosia, 11th November 2010 
Mr Jack Straw, MP
House of Commons
London SW1A 00A
Dear Mr. Straw, 
We refer to your article in “The Times”, 8 November 2010, to mention the following:

1.  Your principal statement “No ifs or buts, Turkey must be part of the EU”

We express sympathy to your pro-Turkish persistence.  After all, Turkey is paying a lot of money in promoting such statements.

  • However, your arguments in support are unfounded, wrong, unjust and politically senseless.

2.  Your argument “Turkey (population 74 million) is now hostage to negotiations over Cyprus. (Greek Cypriot population 0.75 million, Turkish Cypriot 0.25 million)”

This is, indeed, the main argument of the Turkish Government itself, reconfirming that Turkey’s arguments and actions on Cyprus continue to be of British origin.

  • No surprise, Mr. Straw! As a matter of fact, if you visit and download the fully documented, bilingual book «Αιματηρή Αλήθεια – Bloody Truth”, you will be fully educated on the British/Turkish conspiracy against Cyprus since the 50’s.
  • May we remind you, Mr. Straw, that against Turkey’s population of 74 million stands the EU population of 500 million, part of which is the Greek Cypriot population (820 thousand), as well as the LEGITIMATE Turkish Cypriot population, whereupon the conclusion of the Cyprus Issue according to the EU Principles (please refer to the Accession Agreement of the sovereign Republic of Cyprus in the EU, Athens 16 April 2003).
  • Your invented figure of “250 thousand Turkish Cypriots” IS FRAUDULENT.  In 1974 Turkish Cypriot population was 120 thousand, TODAY is 80 thousand (the rest could not stand the illegal presence of Turkish soldiers and settlers and left their Country).  The vast majority of what you call “250 thousand Turkish Cypriots” is ILLEGAL SETTLERS, exported from Turkey to the illegally occupied part of the Republic of Cyprus, for the purpose of occupying the stolen Greek owned properties and change the demographic picture of the occupied area TO START WITH and, eventually, the entire demographic chart of the Island.

As you may be are aware of, this consists an internationally declared Crime of War.

3.  Your lengthy argument “the writ of the Government of Cyprus extends only to the south of the island, ever since the Turkish Army’s occupation of the predominantly Turkish Cypriot north in 1974. A UN “Green Line” runs through the middle of the capital, Nicosia, with the government of the not-so-far recognised “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus” (TRNC) in control in the north […] There are two stories: one of the “unjustifiable” Turkish invasion; the other of such “violent oppression” by the Greek majority of the minority that Turkish protection was (and is) vital. Both sets of stories have truths, but because Greek Cyprus was admitted to the EU before any settlement of the island’s future it is their truths which dominate EU decisions on Turkey”
  • This argument violates all political, legal and ethical principles, is cynical and degrades your status as former Foreign Secretary and MP of your Country. 
  • May we remind you, Mr. Straw, that the Republic of Cyprus is the State evolved in 1963/64 due to the British/Turkish UNSUCCESSFUL conspiracy to abolish the existing State, the secession/self-isolation of the Turks of Cyprus and the self-abolition of the Treaty of Guarantee, that this sovereign State is democratically governed by the natural majority of its legitimate Citizens, that this very State is internationally recognized for the past 47 years and that this is the State, which on the 1st of May 2004 joined the EU, as an equal member-State, sovereign over the whole of the island of Cyprus.
  • May we further remind you, Mr. Straw, that the “Green Line” running through the middle of our Country was NOT originated by the UN, but by a group of British soldiers led by British Major Taggart, who on 30 May 1956 divided Nicosia into two with iron bars and barbed wire, calling at the time this dividing line “Mason-Dixon Line”. This was the initial “partition line” imposed in Cyprus by the British colonial power, which was completed (and drawn In green) by British General Peter Young in December 1963, and so called “Green Line” since then (see "Bloody Truth" Ch. B19 and B31).
  • Last but not least, we also wish to tell you, Mr. Straw, that violent oppression indeed exists, imposed however by the illegal Turkish invaders, who violate collectively and day after day for 37 years the Human Rights on all the legitimate Citizens of the Republic of Cyprus (Greek Cypriots, Turkish Cypriots, Latin Cypriots, Maronite Cypriots and Armenian Cypriots).

Here is our own statement:
    • Your overall approach is made purely for the sake of applying moral and psychological pressure on Greek Cypriots, in view of an anticipated repetition of the David Hannay’s “Anan Plan 2002-2004”.
    • Forget it, Mr. Straw. Any such “arrangement” will be just another FIASCO.
    • The attempt to abolish the European Republic of Cyprus and convert it into a Turkish protectorate under British Guardianship is, simply, out of the question.

So, please, do not be furious upon the -even stronger compared to that of 2004- rejection of the “Bizonal, Bicommunal Federation” conspiracy. Just blame yourselves for being arrogant and extraneous.  

Panos Ioannides

Cypriot High Commissioner Alexandros N. Zenon replies to Jack Straw

Turkey, the EU and the Cyprus issue
'THE TIMES', Letter to the Editor

November 11 2010 1:01AM

Never has a former Foreign Secretary overlooked his country’s international treaty obligations in such a provocative manner

Sir, What is surprising about Jack Straw’s article (“No ifs or buts, Turkey must be part of the EU”, Opinion, Nov 8) is not so much his inflammatory positions but his lack of understanding of basic facts of the Cyprus problem.

Cyprus became a member of the EU after long negotiations, having fulfilled all criteria, with the support of Mr Straw’s predecessor and of the UK. Accepting a proposed plan for solution was never a precondition, hence the need for a referendum.

Despite his claims, Cyprus, never vetoed Turkey’s membership, but was not given a blank cheque either. The 2006 decision to “freeze” a number of chapters was taken unanimously by all member states, including the UK, due to Turkey’s refusal to fulfil her obligations vis-à-vis the EU and its member states.

While Mr Straw is ready to admit “Turkish Army’s occupation”, he did not condemn this tragic reality. Instead, he calls on the UK Government “to consider formally the partition of Cyprus”. Never before has a former Foreign Secretary overlooked his country’s international treaty obligations and UN Security Council decisions, guaranteeing the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Cyprus, in such a provocative manner.

Mr Straw seems to have anticipated the fury that his comments would cause. I am not going to ask him to “wash his mouth with carbolic”. After all, it is not his words that I, and thousands of Cypriot refugees, find disturbing, but his logic. Can he not really see that the consequence of his line of thinking would open a highway for his worst fears to come about?

Alexandros N. Zenon
High Commissioner for the Republic of Cyprus, London SW1


Press and Information Office
Cyprus High Commission
13 St. James' Square
London SW1Y 4LB

Tel:  02073214-143/141
Fax: 02073214-167/164/165

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Turkish mentality, 2010: "I LOVE TO HATE"

The following screen shots* from Facebook tell us a lot... Who taught this young girl (born in 1988) to "love to hate"? What kind of educational and social conditions lead this girl to join such racist groups as the "F*uck Armenian" one? Is it the kind of education and the kind of society and politics that denies the Armenican Genocide and calls the brutal Turkish invasion and occupation of Cyprus a ..."peace operation"?

Who can forget the disturbing images of other young Turkish shouting "Heil Hitler" and "Turks raped your mothers" and giving Nazi salutes?

Make sure you report this racist, hate group to Facebook, and let us all try to understand what leads young Turks such as Gunel to "love to hate" and have so much venom in their hearts (literally...)

* At the time the screen shots were taken and published, both profiles on Facebook were open to public

Friday, November 5, 2010

Genocide and Invasion denier Michael McMahon defeated

Once again, congratulations to the Hellenes and the Armenians grassroots activists for this amazing coordination of action. United we can achieve a lot! Our warmest regards to the Cyprus Action Network of America and the Armenian National Council of America. Keep up the good work! Genocide and Invasion denial shall not go unchallenged!

PS - Shame on PSEKA and CFA, we can add nothing more. There actions are a disgrace to the Hellenic Diaspora. Shame on them for supporting the neo-apartheid constitution of the "Bizonal Bicommunal Federation" a racist and anti-Hellenic "solution" to the Cyprus problem.

Cyprus Action Network of America
Press Release, 04 November 2010

The Cyprus Action Network of America (CANA) is pleased to announce that Armenian Genocide denier and Turkish invasion denier Michael McMahon was defeated in the Congressional elections for District 13 in New York by Republican challenger Michael Grimm. In March of this year McMahon as Congressman voted against the Armenian Genocide resolution and received funding from Turkish foreign sources three weeks after this vote.

The Greek American community of Brooklyn and Staten Island and throughout the greater New York area was mobilized against McMahon thanks to early initiatives and hard work by CANA and the ANCA Armenian National Committee of America. Eleni Kostopoulos, a Bay Ridge Brooklyn resident and lead writer for community issues for the National Herald wrote a series of articles about Genocide denial and McMahon following press releases issued by CANA to the community. In the (March 12-March 19, 2010) weekly edition of The National Herald Eleni Kostopoulos wrote about McMahon’s vote against the Armenian Genocide in Congress ““I was particularly bothered by this narrow margin victory when I was informed that the congressman who represents my district (a district comprised of an estimated 20,000 Greek Americans) was one of those 22 voters against the resolution. Michael McMahon is a congressman I will not vote for come congressional elections.”

In the weeks following the McMahon’s vote, Greek American and Armenian American community activists protested a fundraiser at Ali Baba’s Turkish restaurant in Manhattan, where McMahon went to receive Turkish government funding for his genocide denial in Congress. This was covered by the community press and recorded on you tube:


Armenian and Greek American activists protest NY Rep. McMahon: Greek Reporter USA

Activists Protest McMahon Effort to Cash-In on Anti-Armenian Genocide Vote ANCA grassroots YouTube:

Distinguished Greek-Cypriot researcher and journalist Fanoulla Argyrou also reported on this in Greek, in a report widely disseminated to Greek and Greek-Cypriot media

Τα «30 αργύρια» του Michael McMahon Για άμεση κυκλοφορία: 30 Μάρτιος, 2010

Despite bitter protests to the representatives of the Cypriot government controlled lobby –PSEKA and “National Coordinated Effort of Hellenes” and Cyprus Federation of America CFA.—the so-called “lobby” continued their support of McMahon , the genocide denier, based on his support of the Turkish-British bizonal bicommunal federation, --Panicos Papanicolaou , Nikos Mouyiaris, and Philip Christopher (all of whom are immigrants from Cyprus and make up the majority of the leadership of the National Coordinated Effort of Hellenes) continued to organize fundraisers for McMahon—as reported by marginal Astoria-based newspaper “Greek News” (whose publisher has family ties to the Cypriot government) Panicos Papanicolaou went so far as to say McMahon “has Cyprus in his heart” sure Panicos can now discuss this at length with the loser McMahon over an Irish Guinness….

McMahon was so fond of this one “Greek” article that he posted it on his own loser website:

The article was written by Apostolos Zoupaniotis, the publisher of the marginal “Greek News”, earlier in the year he also posted a series of pro-McMahon screeds on his newspaper’s websites attempting the “kill the messenger” that brought the news out that McMahon is a Genocide denier and gets Turkish funding, here’s one in English that is almost as bad as Christofias’ was at the Brookings Institution:

"The loser McMahon with his characteristic "I smell something bad" smile poses with Panicos Papanicolaou at a recent barbacue fundraiser in Papanicolaou's Brooklyn Mansion. Panicos says McMahon "has Cyprus in his heart" ,sure Panicos can discuss it with loser McMahon over an Irish Guinness now." (comment by CANA)

Christofias’ bizonal ideology was not lost on McMahon, who repeatedly said he supported bizonality. And Christofias’ support of McMahon runs deep, in this picture we see McMahon with his characteristic “I smell something bad smile” alongside Christofias.

What this lesson teaches us is that the so-called “lobby” (or Cypriot government controlled lobby”) has failed, that despite its feet stomping that would make a three year old proud, the Greek American community when shown the evidence will NEVER side with Genocide denial and those who take Turkish blood money.

The age of the internet has given CANA the wide coverage that dwarfs little marginal newspapers like “Greek News” We at CANA are happy that the people won this time, McMahon is defeated.

It’s time that the Greek American community starts being run by the Greek Americans and not by foreign controlled lobbies, this defeat of McMahon show how our people united can never be defeated.

It’s sad that the well-funded so-called “lobby” failed to organize at the grass-roots and we are left in this election with only 2 full-blooded Greeks in Congress, Bilirakis and Sarbanes. Meanwhile, grassroots power has won this election, the ANCA Press Release this morning reads, OVER 90% OF ANCA BACKED CANDIDATES WIN: “Each of the six non-incumbents endorsed and backed by the ANCA won their elections, including, most notably Michael Grimm, who, with the energetic support of ANCA activists in New York, unseated Armenian Genocide Resolution opponent Rep. Michael McMahon (D-NY). Grimm has been vocal about his support for Armenian Genocide legislation and the need to end Turkey’s occupation of Cyprus in meetings with Armenian and Greek American activists, who volunteered with the Republican challenger’s campaign.”

Good riddance to bad rubbish.
Nikolaos Taneris, Press Officer, Cyprus Action Network of America (CANA)

Over 90% of ANCA backed candidates win

Armenian National Committee of America
Press Release, 03 November 2010
Contact: Elizabeth S. Chouldjian ~ Tel: (202) 775-1918


Key Senate Victories include Reid, Kirk, Boxer, Schumer, and Mikulski; ANCA Played Key Role in Defeat of McMahon and Shea-Porter

WASHINGTON, DC – Over 90% of the Congressional candidates backed by the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) prevailed in yesterday’s hard-fought mid-term elections.

“We join with Armenian Americans from across the country in congratulating the winners of these elections from both parties, and look forward to working constructively with the new members and leaders of Congress,” said ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian. “We are especially proud of our community’s pivotal role in the outcome of several key races, including Mark Kirk’s victory in Illinois, Barbara Boxer’s win in California, Harry Reid’s triumph in Nevada, and, of course, Mike Grimm’s defeat of Representative Michael McMahon.”

A complete list of ANCA endorsed candidates and how they fared in the 2010 Congressional elections is provided below.

Five out of the six Senators endorsed by the ANCA emerged victorious, including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and Barbara Mikulski (D-MD). The only ANCA backed Senate candidate to lose was Russ Feingold (D-WI), a perennial cosponsor of Armenian Genocide legislation.

On the House side, the ANCA endorsed 158 candidates in 31 states. Of this total, 152 were incumbents, of which, only nine were reported to have lost their re-election bids, with two races still pending. Each of the six non-incumbents endorsed and backed by the ANCA won their elections, including, most notably Michael Grimm, who, with the energetic support of ANCA activists in New York, unseated Armenian Genocide Resolution opponent Rep. Michael McMahon (D-NY). Grimm has been vocal about his support for Armenian Genocide legislation and the need to end Turkey’s occupation of Cyprus in meetings with Armenian and Greek American activists, who volunteered with the Republican challenger’s campaign.

ANCA activists in New Hampshire, and from across New England, played a pivotal role in helping Republican Frank Guinta successfully unseat Congresswoman Carol Shea Porter (D-NH). Porter, who has actively opposed a number Armenian American legislative initiatives, including the adoption of the Armenian Genocide Resolution, was defeated by Guinta, 46% to 39%, with the active support of Armenian American voters and a coalition of others committed to human rights and humanitarian issues. In addition to Congressional Report Cards (Shea-Porter received an ANCA rating of "C" in 2010 and "F" in 2008) and the Congressional Candidate Questionnaires, which Guinta completed, the ANCA endorsed Guinta and rallied local voters with a 72-hour get-out-the vote-campaign that featured phone banking and targeted emails.

Other challengers securing victories on Tuesday night included Robert Dold, who will succeed Congressional Armenian Caucus Co-Chair Mark Kirk in Illinois’ 10th district; Marlin Stutzman, elected to the seat vacated by Rep. Mark Souder in Indiana’s 3rd district; Hansen Clarke, who beat incumbent Representative Carolyn Kilpatrick Cheeks in the Democratic primary in Michigan’s 13th district; and David Cicilline, who will succeed retiring Congressman Patrick Kennedy in Rhode Island’s first Congressional District. ANCA activists in each of these states worked closely with the individual campaigns, volunteering for phone banks, emailing constituents and joining in a variety of “get-out-the-vote” activities.

Among the key ANCA endorsed incumbent winners were Congressman Eric Cantor (R-VA), who will likely be the House Majority Leader, and Thaddeus McCotter, who is also set to remain in the Republican leadership. House Armenian Caucus CoChair Frank Pallone (D-NJ), who received an A+ rating and was endorsed by the ANCA, survived a strong challenge by Republican Anna Little. Armenian Genocide Resolution (H.Res.252) lead sponsor Adam Schiff (D-CA) won reelection by a broad margin, along with House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Howard Berman (D-CA), who played a critical role in securing his Committee's passage of this human rights measure in March, 2010. Other supporter of Armenian American concerns did not fare as well, with Florida Democrat Ron Klein losing his re-election bid and Central Valley Congressman Jim Costa battling in a race that is still too close to call.

Members of Congress who have worked against Armenian American priorities and were defeated included Reps. Ike Skelton (D-MO) and Solomon Ortiz (D-TX), who spearheaded a Congressional letter to Speaker Pelosi in 2007 opposing House consideration of the Armenian Genocide Resolution. Other House members who received poor grades on the ANCA rating system and who lost their re-election bids were: Earl Pomeroy (D-ND), Melissa Bean (D-IL), Chris Carney (D-PA), Chet Edwards (D-TX), Ciro Rodriguez (D-TX), Patrick Murphy (D-PA) and John Spratt (D-SC). Rep. Gerry Connolly, who voted and spoke against the Armenian Genocide Resolution in committee this past March, remains in a tight race that appears headed for a recount.

As a result of these elections, the Democratic majority in the Senate will narrow, and the U.S. House will shift from Democratic to Republican control, moving leadership of key committees, including Foreign Affairs and Appropriations, into the hands of GOP chairmen.

Unprecedented Armenian American Community and Campaign Outreach:

In dozens of states and hundreds of Congressional Districts across the United States in which ANCA endorsed candidates ran, the ANCA sent tens of thousands of customized email messages to Armenian American voters. These messages featured the ANCA grade for each candidate, news about whether the ANCA has endorsed their campaign, and a listing of ANCA records and ratings for their state's full Congressional delegation.

The ANCA's email campaign was complemented by tens of thousands of phone calls by both volunteers and automated phone systems to Armenian American voters, each with individualized messages about the importance of voting for ANCA-endorsed candidates.

The ANCA's final push built upon months of voter registration campaigns and community education and empowerment programs. ANCA regional and local activists volunteered on campaigns and encouraged candidates to fill out the ANCA Candidate questionnaire.

A key element of this effort, as in years past, has been ANCA Congressional Report Cards, a detailed review and rating of the records of each Congressional incumbent on more than a dozen individual legislative initiatives of special concern to Armenian American voters.