A Short Story: Brief Dialog Between the Representative of Rainbow
and the Greek Ambassador at the OSCE during the HDIM in Warsaw
Source: Greek Helsinki Monitor & Minority Rights Group
Greek - http://cm.greekhelsinki.gr/index.php?sec=192&cid=1236
read this page in Macedonian
At the recent HDIM (Human Dimension Implementation meeting)
of the OSCE in Warsaw (25-30 September, 2005) dedicated mainly
to human rights
and minority issues, Rainbow has been participating as an organization
of the Macedonian minority in Greece.
During the meeting representatives of NGOs are able to expose their
views and facts before the State delegates regarding the violations
of minority and human rights.
State and NGO delegates are speaking in the same place at the same
time under equal conditions. State delegates have just one more right
which is the right to reply.
In these circumstances a specific dialog is taking place among all
the delegates of the meeting.
In this framework the representative of Rainbow was able to expose
the present situation of the Macedonian minority in Greece as well as
a general view about the issue of human and minority rights in Greece.
The representative of the Greek state has once again stated the well
known views of the Greek government, arguing about the so-called non-existent
Macedonian minority in Greece; referring to a small number of people
speaking a "Slavic idiom" in Northern Greece.
The speeches of the representative of Rainbow can be seen on www.florina.org
Besides the official program of the meeting, the representative of
Rainbow, Mr. Pavlos Voskopoulos, had the opportunity to discuss
briefly with the Greek Ambassador to the OSCE, Mr. Lyssandros
was participating at this event.
This short discussion is the following text:
||Good afternoon Mr. Ambassador. It was
a tough day for all of us, don't you think so?
||How much money are you getting paid Mister for saying
all of this here?
I am surprised Mr. Ambassador. As I know you are
officially paid well enough for being here, representing
our country. We are financially supported by ourselves
at such a meeting.
May I ask you, Mr. Ambassador, if the representative of the
Greek minority in Turkey who spoke yesterday defending
the rights of the Greek minority in Turkey is also paid
Furthermore, what about the Greek minority in Albania?
Have they also been
paid by somebody in their struggle for human rights in Albania?
||What I know is that Greece is the most democratic
||Of course it is a democratic country, but regarding
minority rights there is a deficit of democracy. Shall
we work all together to overcome these problems?
||There are no minorities in Greece Sir, there is just
a Muslim minority living in Greece under very good conditions.
||But Mr. Ambassador, how is it possible that Greece
is the only state with no national minorities when all
the other Balkan states are full of them? As there are
Greeks in Turkey or
Albania there are also minorities inside the Greek state.
||In Greece we have a large minority which is the minority
of the economical immigrants traveling and staying in our
country which is a real heaven for them...
Mr. Ambassador all these immigrants are suffering
in their countries and in some of them, Sudan for instance,
there is an armed conflict so it's logical that they are
coming to Greece
for a better future as well as to other European countries.
It's not because Greece is heaven that they are coming
in our country...
By the way, when we are talking about
that it's time for our country to make a step forward
and give Macedonian political refugees who participated
the [Greek] Civil War the right to be
repatriated. It's more a humanitarian gesture to at least
allow these people to die in their birthplaces.
||What are you talking about Mister? You mean to let
them enter our country as the "Trojan horse"?
||Mr. Ambassador I am surprised with your answer...Those
people are mostly old men and women around seventy years
old... Don't you really feel bad that you are representing our country
in the OSCE with such extreme views... May I ask you why
not give the same answers during the conference when the
issue was presented by myself?
||Listen to me Mister. Greece has shed rivers of blood
for its glory, for being where it is today!
||Mr. Ambassador I am once again surprised. In the
present situation when we are all trying to build a United
Europe, when we are fighting for peace in the early beginning
of the 21st century you are talking about rivers of blood? You should
know that we the Macedonians in Greece care very,
very much about peace
and democracy in our country and obviously you cannot
even imagine this...
||Well, if you don't like it you can leave Greece!
||Mr. Ambassador I am now really shocked by what you
said. Mr. Ambassador we belong to different worlds...
||Thanks God we belong to different worlds...
I hope the younger generation of Greek diplomats
will not agree with your way of country thinking ...for
the benefit of all of us... Your opinion is a shame to our country...
Good afternoon Mr. Ambassador I am leaving really shocked after
what I've heard from you...