Deputy Foreign Minister Theodoros Kassimis was warmly received by the members of the Greek expatriate community in the Chilean capital, the third stop of his tour of Latin America.
The Greek community, founded back in 1918, numbers some 1,500 individuals, 500 of them in Santiago. According to community leaders, the majority of ethnic Greeks in Chile are in mixed marriages but still dedicated in preserving their Hellenic identity.
The Greek, Byzantine and Modern Studies Centre in the University of Santiago, the Classical Studies Centre in the University of Valparaiso, the Branch of the International Society of the Friends of Nikos Kazantzakis, the Hellenic-Chilean Chamber of Commerce and Culture operating in the country are just a few examples of what an active Greek expatriate community can do despite its small size.
Speaking in the Greek Cultural Centre in Santiago, Kassimis underlined that the World Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE) first regional convention for Central and South America will be held in the Chilean capital, in recognition of the active Greek community.
The visit of the deputy FM to Santiago coincides with the SAE regional convention on Friday, inaugurated in the presence of Archbishop Tarasios of South and Central America, SAE President Stefanos Tamvakis and Greek Parliament MPs.
In a meeting he had with his Chilean counterpart, Kassimis discussed ways to upgrade the Greek-Chilean relations and issues of bilateral interest.