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21 June, 2001
Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou on Wednesday issued a statement on the occasion of the first-ever international day focusing on refugees the world over, held on the same day as the 50th anniversary since the establishment of the United Nations' High Commission for Refugees.
"This day should be a day of solidarity for the millions of our fellow humans around the world that are living under very difficult conditions ... persecuted by authoritarian regimes, but also by poverty and underdevelopment; people seeking a more humane life for themselves and their families."
Papandreou cited what he called a "democratic obligation" by all to contribute to a large-scale movement that will struggle for the protection of human rights, democratic institutions and the abolition of political and economic reasons that continue to create waves of refugees in the modern day.
Source: Athens News Agency