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J’lem sends greetings to new Greek gov’t

June 22, 2012 01:19

“Israel wishes the new government of Greece much success in facing the complex economic challenges," Foreign Minister writes.

ANTONIS SAMARAS, leader of the Greek New Democracy

ANTONIS SAMARAS, leader of the Greek New Democracy 370. (photo credit:John Kolesidis/Reuters)

Jerusalem sent its best wishes to Athens on Thursday soon after Greece – after two months of political stalemate – named a new cabinet to try and pull the country out of its economic morass.

“Israel wishes the new government of Greece much success in facing the complex economic challenges which lay ahead for the country,” said a statement issued by the Foreign Ministry.

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“We share the hope that the government of Antonis Samaras will lead Greece toward a better future. The State of Israel will continue to nurture its friendship with the Greek people and their government, and will endeavor to widen the ties between the two countries.”

Israel heaved a sigh of relief when Samaras narrowly defeated the radical left SYRIZA party that had threatened to fundamentally change Greece’s policy toward Israel, which had improved dramatically over the last two years.

While congratulating the new government, the statement said Israel shared the “concern of the democratic forces in Greece” regarding the 18 members of the farright Golden Dawn party elected to the Greek parliament “and the possible influence of this group on the development of racist, xenophobic and anti-Semitic ideas in the country. We trust in the ability of Greece to tackle this challenge too, and to preserve its ancient democratic values.”

The Golden Dawn party, whose leader has denied the Holocaust, received about 7% of the vote.
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