CULTURE

‘Long live Greece!’ says Bloomberg at Mayors’ Summit

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg told the Hellenic American Chamber of Commerce that a memorial to the Trade Center would show terrorists «that they haven’t won,» says a report from The Associated Press. Bloomberg didn’t specify what shape the memorial would take but said it should portray a clear message of resilience following the September 11 attacks. Now in Athens for the second World Mayors’ Summit (September 19-22), hosted by Athens Mayor Dimitris Avramopoulos, Bloomberg started his address to the summit by saying at the start of his speech, «Long live Greece!» He noted that many basic Western values sprang from ancient Athens. «The attack on New York City was not an attack on a geographic place,» added Bloomberg. «It was an attack on a philosophy and lifestyle.» Mayors and their representatives have arrived from all over Europe and from nations that have been much in the news – Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Israel, Palestine, Bulgaria, Estonia, Albania and Cyprus. The largest delegations are from China and New York. Many of the staff with New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg are of Greek origin, such as New York State Senator Dean Skelos, government business manager Aeda Michaltses, and Congressmen Michael Giannaris and Matthew Mirones. Bloomberg is accompanied by his daughter Emma. On Friday afternoon, Greek President Costis Stephanopoulos received US Ambassador Thomas Miller, Athens Mayor Dimitris Avramopoulos, Washington DC Mayor Anthony Williams, and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg. In the evening, the president received all 45 mayors along with members of the Council of Europe and other notables. Today Bloomberg is visiting Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomaios at the Phanar in Istanbul. He had visited the patriarch in his hotel when Vartholomaios went on a pilgrimage to New York to where the small Orthodox church of Saint Nicholas was demolished at Ground Zero. Members of the International Olympic Committee are also participating in the congress, New York has made a bid to host the 2012 Olympics, and ATHOC President Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki showed Bloomberg around the Olympic projects. Remarking that the Greeks were inspired by New York’s resilience, she told Bloomberg the city had «turned a tragedy into a recovery, and recovery into a revival. New York is a great city with great people.» The benchmark general index added 0.96 percent to 1,886.67 points but ended the week with losses of more than 4 percent.