“Greece is Macedonia, Greece is Macedonia.” Over and over again, guest speakers from many organizations repeated the message. Greek Americans from across the nation gathered in NYC, to protest opposition to any use of the word “Macedonia” in the negotiations currently underway between the governments of Greece and the FYROM. Philadelphians also participated and sent three speakers of their own with their contingency.
George Horiatis of the AHEPA, Stathis Karadonis of the Federation of Hellenic-American Societies, and Konstantine Ouranitsas, of the National Hellenic Students Association each spoke out about the topic. They lent their voices to the overwhelming theme, which captivated the crowd and brought them to a frenzy on several occasions. Five buses left on Sunday morning from area churches for New York City, where they joined nearly a thousand Greek-Americans for the afternoon. The Pan Macedonian Society of Philadelphia sponsored the area buses and attended with a contingency of their own.
The rally at the United Nations Plaza was organized by the Federation of Hellenic Societies of Greater New York, the Pan-Macedonian Association of USA, the Hellenic American Congress and other Greek organizations from all corners of the US.
The largest organization of Greek Americans, the American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association (AHEPA), also participated in the rally. This is the first demonstration on the naming dispute happening in the United States this year. Massive demonstrations have already taken place in Thessaloniki and Athens, as well as protests in numerous European, Canadian and Australian cities.