Under the Jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarchate
The Government of Greece organized an International Conference on “Religious and Cultural Pluralism and Peaceful Coexistence in the Middle East” (Athens, 18-20 October 2015).
The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Nikolaos Kotzias, invited Metropolitan Sotirios to this conference as a speaker. Participants at the Conference included Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, Patriarch Theodore of Alexandria, Patriarch John of Antioch, Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem, Archbishop Chrysostomos of Cyprus, Archbishop Ieronymos of Greece, Archbishop Anastasios of Albania and Archbishop Demetrios of America. Also participating were Muslim leaders, foreign ministers of various countries, diplomats, university professors and others.
During the International Conference, Metropolitan Sotirios attended a dinner and sat at the same table as Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, with whom he had a cordial conversation because they descend from the same region in Greece. He also had a private audience with the President of the Hellenic Republic, Mr. Prokopis Pavlopoulos; the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Nikolaos Kotzias; and, the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Ioannis Amanatidis.
On the day following the Conference he visited Minister Olga Gerovasili, the designated government spokeswoman, at the Maximos Mansion, who, like Prime Minister Tsipras, descends from the same region as he does.