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Last night the U.S. House of Representatives passed, by a an overwhelming vote of 417 for and only 4 against, legislation calling for a U.S. initiative seeking a just and peaceful resolution of the Cyprus problem. This resolution, H. Con. Res. 81, was cosponsored by 68 members of Congress.

"We would like to thank the chairman and ranking minority member of the House International Relations Committee, Congressmen Ben Gilman (R-NY) and Lee Hamilton (D-IN), and the other original co-sponsors of this legislation -- Representatives Mike Bilirakis (R-FL), John Porter (R-IL), Eliot Engel (D-NY), and Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) -- for their efforts on this important resolution," said Philip Christopher, president of the International Coordinating Committee -- Justice for Cyprus (PSEKA) and the Pancyprian Association of America.

"Last night's vote sends a strong message to Turkey and others who have prevented a Cyprus solution for over 23 years," said Andrew A. Athens, national chairman of the United Hellenic American Congress (UHAC) and who, in another capacity, serves as president of the World Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE).

Andrew E. Manatos, president of the National Coordinated Effort of Hellenes, said, "Four hundred and seventeen members of Congress, or 96 percent of the U.S. House of Representatives, are now formally on record supporting several important principles with regard to the Cyprus issue. Those principles, enumerated in this resolution, include:

Those members of Congress who spoke in support of this resolution when it was debated on the floor of the House of Representatives included (in the order they spoke): Representatives Gilman (R-NY), Eni Faleomavaega (D-AS), Bilirakis (R-FL), Frank Pallone (D-NJ), Bob Weygand (D-RI), Mike Pappas (R-NJ), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Steve Rothman (D-NJ), Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), and Bob Menendez (D-NJ). Congressmen Porter (R-IL) and Engel (D-NY) also submitted remarks for the Congressional Record.

The only members of Congress who did not vote for this resolution inculded: the four who voted against it -- Representatives Bob Barr (R-GA), Michael Collins (R-GA), Nathan Deal (R-GA), and Ron Paul (R-TX); and the 14 who did not vote -- JoAnn Emerson (R-MO), Thomas Foglietta (D-PA), Richard Gephardt (D-MO), Bill Goodling (R-PA), Asa Hutchinson (R-AR), Joseph McDade (R-PA), Alan Mollohan (D-WV), Mike Parker (R-MS), Steven Schiff (R-NM), Maxine Waters (D-CA), Henry Waxman (D-CA), Sidney Yates (D-IL) and Don Young (R-AK).

The Senate version of this legislation, S. Con. Res. 41, was adopted by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last week and is pending consideration before the full U.S. Senate.

For more information, please contact Mike Manatos at (202) 393-7790.

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