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Letter to Greek Consulate in Toronto Regarding Greece's Pledge to Abolish Blacklist of Ethnic Macedonians

March 06, 2004

Mr. Efthymios Efthymiades
Consul General of the Hellenic Republic
365 Bloor Street East, Suite 1800
Toronto, Ontario
M4W 3L4

Dear Consul General,

As you are aware, the Greek Deputy Foreign Minister, Andreas Loverdos, announced on January 8, 2004 that Greece will abolish the blacklist of ethnic Macedonians and permit these people to visit Greece. I was born in Ag. Germanos, Florina, Greece in 1941 and emigrated to Canada in 1969. While I was permitted to enter Greece several times between 1984 and 1997, I was denied entry on January 28, 2000. At that time, I was travelling on a Canadian passport but I was denied entry and told by the border officials that I was on Greece's blacklist.

The Macedonian community welcomes Mr. Loverdos's announcement and I look forward to visiting Greece. I would like to confirm that the blacklist has been abolished and that I will encounter no difficulties in trying to enter Greece. I would be much obliged were you confirm to me in writing at the address above that the blacklist on which I was listed as recently as January 2000 has been abolished and that there is no reason why my entry into Greece ought to be forbidden. If I do not hear from you by March 31, 2004 I will assume that despite Minister Loverdosís public declaration of the abolition of the blacklist targeting ethnic Macedonians the blacklist persists and Greece has no intention of making good on Minister Loverdosís promise.

Many thanks.


George Saragil

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