It is a pleasure for me to address you, the Greek authorities, the People of Greece as well as the Greek diaspora in Malta, as you celebrate the National Day of the Hellenic Republic.
I also want to express my gratitude to His Excellency, Ambassador Tsoungas for this opportunity.
This year marks an important anniversary in the history of Greece. Two hundred years since the outbreak of the Greek Revolution in 1821 and the consequent War of Independence. Today we celebrate the re-birth of Modern Greece.
Anniversaries such as this one invite us to reflect on the events that led to these uprisings and their outcomes. The bicentenary of a rewakening of one people spread hope to the rest of Europe and the Mediterranean. The Greek Revolution serves as a powerful reminder of the value of fighting for freedom and the propagation of modern democratic model.
Our reflections however, should not stop there.
Inspired by these historical course changing events, we all need to re-learn the importance of uniting for the values we cherish the most. We have a sterling
opportunity to re-evaluate and discern about discourse of European unity and the value of mutual solidarity.
These values are at the core of the fabric that make up both Malta and Greece.
It comes to no surprise that we team together when it comes to tackling challenges of global nature. From the issue of migration, to maritime matters, combating organised crime, to peaceful resolution of conflict and now the fight against a pandemic that has changed the world and plunged us all into a ‘new normal’, we commit to continue working together to find the best possible ways forward.
With this in mind, I am certain that given the chance to serve as non-permanent members within the United Nations Secruity Council in the coming years, both Malta and Greece would be the best candidates for the promotion of dialogue, peace and equanimity when facing trying situations.
On the 30th of April we will be celebrating yet another important anniversary. This year marks the fifty fifth (55) year since the establishment of formal diplomatic relations between Malta and Greece. I have intentionally used the word formal because our relations date back millenia. Our historians have taught us that even the name ‘Malta’ is derivative from the Greek word for honey or ‘méli’. So the establishment of our bilateral ties serve as a celebration of our reconnection at the highest political level.
I personally have very fond recollections of my visits to Greece with the most recent being for the Arraiolos meeting in October 2019.
On this it is worth noting that our Peoples have never ceeded in their exchanges through trade and familial affiliations. Our respective diasporas are testement to the ever enduring friendship between brotherly nations.
In this regard, I would like to thank our respective Embassies in Malta and in Greece, for the excellent assistance they provide to ensure that such ties are maintained and strengthened even more over the years.
My final message and wish is the continuation of our ties on many levels, that together we keep striving to be a beacon of hope for our Peoples and those inhabiting our Mediterranean region. Let us make sure that we remember our history to ensure a better future for all.
With these thoughts, I want to send my best wishes to Her Excllency Katerina Sakellaropoulou, President of the Hellenic Republic, to the People of Greece and to the Greek diaspora here in Malta for a safe and joyfoul celebration of this bicentennial anniversary.