Eleni Petinos MP, Member for Miranda:

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Today we celebrate Greece’s defiance of the Axis Powers and fighting for the values of freedom and democracy that unite us all.

On 28 October 1940, Greece sent a message not only to Italian Dictator, Benito Mussolini, but to the entire world – “No”.

In this moment, the global community looked to Greece with admiration and respect as Greek Prime Minister Ioannis Metaxas refused to bend to the Italian ultimatum.

This historic display of bravery and defiance in the face of oppression is an enduring legacy instilled in all children of the diaspora, including those growing up here in Australia. This moment in history is the embodiment of the Greek spirit and represents who we are as a people.

80 years on, it is incumbent upon us to take a moment to pause and reflect with pride on the courage and sacrifice of our ancestors this Oxi Day.

As Sir Winston Churchill astutely put it, “We will not say that Greeks fight like heroes, but that heroes fight like Greeks”.

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