As a former member of the House Committee on Foreign affairs and current member of the Caucus on International Religious Freedom, Congressman Bilirakis’ desire to support our allies, protect religious freedom, and prevent attacks from our enemies have kept him apprised of major world events.
As the grandson of Greek immigrants, Bilirakis is heavily invested in Hellenic affairs. The region is vital to American interests, and Greece is a strong ally of the United States. He is the Co-Chair of the Congressional Caucus on Hellenic Affairs and the founding Co-Chair of the Congressional Hellenic Israeli Alliance. Israel is a strategic ally in the region as well, sharing a common defense strategy with the United States, Greece, Cyprus, and other allies to thwart existential threats from bad actors in the region. In an increasingly connected world, it is important to recognize that upheaval and unrest in the Middle East can have ripples that echo across the Atlantic. American interests must be protected at all cost, and Congressman Bilirakis embraces the opportunity to work with world leaders to ensure a peaceful future in the Middle East and at home.
Congressman Bilirakis strongly opposes the illegal Turkish occupation of Cyprus, and has been a strong proponent of the reunification of Cyprus, on behalf of all the Cypriot people. He believes strongly in protecting religious freedoms across the globe, and stopping the persecution of religious minorities, including Coptic Christians in Egypt and Eastern Orthodox Christians in Turkey.
As the rule of law is continually being stretched and ignored in countries throughout Central and South America, and even Europe, Congress needs to speak loudly and act decisively where injustice is deteriorating democracies.
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Looking back on 2016, a turbulent year for sure in politics, we often saw the biggest rivalries and the loudest pundits take center stage. All along, my main focus was always working hard on behalf of Florida’s 12th District. We accomplished some important legislative wins for our communities, with 16 initiatives I wrote being signed into law this year.
While there’s still much work to be done, a unified Republican government come January will give us a strong foundation to solve the largest problems facing Florida and the entire country.
As Co-Chair of the Congressional Caucus on Hellenic Affairs and the Congressional Hellenic-Israel Alliance, Congressman Gus Bilirakis (R-FL) released the following statement regarding the rising tensions in the Aegean over recent Turkish provocation.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Carolyn B. Maloney (NY-12), Co-Chair of the Congressional Caucus on Hellenic Issues, introduced a resolution today calling on Great Britain to return the Parthenon Marbles to Greece. The Marbles were removed from Greece 200 years ago by Thomas Bruce, seventh Earl of Elgin and transported to Great Britain. The Marbles were part of a frieze that wrapped around the Temple of Athena. In 1816, the British Parliament voted to purchase the Marbles and they now reside in the British Museum.