During a speech of the Minister of Foreign Affairs George Katrougalos at the Columbia University in New York on the Prespes Agreement, Greek expats asked questions in an aggressive manner in disagreement and eventually left in protestation.
More specifically, it all started after the Minister’s speech, when the member of the Pan-Macedonian Union of America, Christos Komsios, took the floor, asking questions regarding the name issue among other things.
Mr. Koutougalos initially asked the coordinators to allow questions, even of this content, insisting on his answer that the Agreement is fair and advantageous for both Greece and the neighboring country, as well as ensuring peace in the region.
Afterwards, irritation prevailed when other people were not given the floor directly, with 8-10 people leaving in protest, some of whom cried the word “betrayal”, as it appears in the video.
“Why did not you come to Astoria to make this speech and talk to the Greeks?”, one said, in a bold tone before leaving in a similar way.
Indeed, the situation almost got out of hand, when a few minutes later, the president of Northern Epirots of New York, Constantine Tsiouris, wanted to ask a question but the coordinator told him that there was no time.
With security personnel making recommendations and eventually threatening him with expulsion from the room, Mr. Tsiouris said that “one million people who protested in Greece are not nationalists” and expressed the doubt that the panelists have actually read the Prespes Agreement.
Commenting later on the incident, Mr. Koutrougalos, who pointed out that he had no problem listening to the questions of those who disagreed, said that the best way is to “convince those who have the opposite view, with arguments”.