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Gus Bilirakis, David Cicilline to Lead the Congressional Hellenic-Israel Alliance

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With longtime U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney, D-NY, now out of Congress, U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Fla., is now working with a new co-chair in the Congressional Hellenic-Israel Alliance (CHIA).

Bilirakis announced this week that U.S. Rep. David Cicilline, D-RI, is joining him as a co-chair.

“CHIA works to strengthen and highlight the relationships between the United States, Greece, Cyprus, and Israel. In an increasingly interconnected world, it is important to recognize that upheaval and global unrest can have ripples that echo across the Atlantic, as has been the case with Russia’s illegal and unjust invasion of Ukraine. CHIA Members embrace the opportunity to work with world leaders to ensure a peaceful and prosperous future for America and our allies. Two of CHIA’s most impressive legislative accomplishments include passage of the Eastern Mediterranean Security and Energy Partnership Act of 2019 and the US-Greece Defense and Interparliamentary Partnership Act of 2021. These bills sought to expand the security, economic, and diplomatic efforts between the United States and Greece, Cyprus, and Israel and create a formal organization where these like-minded countries can achieve energy prosperity and help address Europe’s energy challenges. There is much more work to do to strengthen ties between these allied nations, particularly as it relates to energy exploration and development, combatting Russian aggression, and strengthening democratic institutions,” the Florida congressman’s office noted.

“Greece, Cyprus and Israel’s strategic location, natural resources, and intellectual capital create a natural partnership to address economic, energy and counter-terrorism issues in the Middle East and Europe,” said Bilirakis. “With the instability Russia has created in the region it is more important than ever to have reliable allies working together to advance our shared interests. As we kick off the 118th Congress, CHIA looks to build upon the success it has previously achieved and to enhance opportunities for greater cooperation between these countries. Doing so is critical for the United States as we seek to promote economic stability and national security.”

“The United States’ steadfast relationship with Greece, Cyprus, and Israel is rooted in our shared commitments to democracy and security and stability in the Eastern Mediterranean,” said Cicilline. “As Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine continues, threatening food and energy security around the world, it is imperative that the U.S. and our allies coalesce to promote our shared values and interests. As we enter the 118th Congress, I look forward to continuing the bipartisan work of CHIA, to building on our relationships with these countries, and to advancing our shared goals across the region.”

Author

  • Originally from Jacksonville, Kevin Derby is a contributing writer for Florida Daily and covers politics across Florida.

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