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 »  Home  »  In Memoriam  »  NFCA is Saddened by the Passing of Congressman Tom Lantos of California
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NFCA is Saddened by the Passing of Congressman Tom Lantos of California
By Joe Foley | Published  02/12/2008 | In Memoriam , Friends | Unrated
Tom Lantos 1928-2008




 
National Federation of Croatian Americans (NFCA)

PRESS RELEASE

"NFCA is Saddened by the Passing of Congressman Tom Lantos of California"

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - February 12, 2008

Washington, DC:    The National Federation of Croatian Americans (NFCA) is
saddened by the passing of U.S. Representative Tom Lantos (D-CA), the
Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee in the U.S. House of
Representatives.  Chairman Lantos was a friend to the Republic of Croatia
and to the Croatian American Community.  He was a progressive leader for
democratic change around the world and a steadfast supporter of the
expansion of human rights for all people regardless of the type of
government that they chose.

    NFCA's President, Mr. Ed Andrus, called on Congressman Lantos in his
office when the NFCA was actively campaigning in early 2005 for the creation
of the current Congressional Croatian Caucus.  Mr. Andrus found that the
Congressman was very informed on and supportive of the Republic of Croatia.
A pleasant man, Congressman Lantos invited Mr. Andrus into his personal
office and discussed the NFCA and the proposed Croatian Caucus, which he
later joined as a Founding Member.  His wife and political partner, Annette,
was with him as was his cute little white lap dog, a constant companion.
The Human Rights Caucus, which Congressman Lantos also was a Founding
Member, had invited the NFCA to testify on the matter of Croatian minority
rights in the Vojvodina region of Serbia/Montenegro (as it was known at the
time) in 2004.  NFCA National Treasurer Zvonko Labas was welcomed to present
testimony and answer questions regarding new approaches to the ongoing
problems of Croatian minority rights in the Vojvodina region.  Soon
thereafter, new Prime Minister Ivo Sanader of Croatia met with Serb
President in Belgrade and signed several partnership agreements, one of which
guaranteed ethnic minority rights in Vojvodina.

Later, Congressman Lantos was one of the Congressional leaders as Ranking
Democrat on the House Committee on International Relations, as the Committee
was known at the time, who helped drive to passage H. Res. 529.  This
important 'Sense of Congress Resolution' and Congressional foreign policy
statement for the United States, which was originally initiated by the NFCA,
commended Croatia for her democratic reforms, ongoing progressive military
policy changes, and called for an invitation for Croatia to join NATO at the
earliest possible date.  Very late that evening when H. Res. 529 was finally
passed on December 14, 2005, Congressman Lantos was still standing on the
House Floor to testify very strongly on Croatia's behalf.

Although he will now never see Croatia join NATO, the good that Congressman
Lantos contributed in this important regard will be long remembered by the
NFCA, the informed Croatian American community, and, we do believe, the
people of the Republic of Croatia.  The NFCA and Croatia's skilled
diplomatic community in Washington will all miss his consistent support of
Croatia and the expansion of democracy and political stability throughout
the Balkans.  In addition, the United States will miss his great leadership,
especially as Chairman of the important House Foreign Affairs Committee.

The NFCA is a national umbrella organization of Croatian American groups
that collectively represents approximately 130,000 members.  For additional
public affairs information, please call Mr. Joe Foley, NFCA Government and
Public Affairs Director, at (301) 294-0937, or Mr. Ed Andrus, NFCA
President, at NFCA Headquarters at (301) 208-6650, or by email at
NFCAhdq@verizon.net.   For recent NFCA newsletters, important NFCA
membership and chapter information, and other Croatian American news please
visit the NFCA’s Web Site at www.nfcaonline.com
 
 
National Federation of Croatian Americans (NFCA)
2401 Research Blvd,  Suite 115
Rockville,  MD  20850
PHONE: (301) 208-6650
FAX:  (301) 208-6659
E-MAIL:  nfcahdq@verizon.net
WEB SITE:
www.nfcaonline.com


Formated for CROWN by Nenad Bach
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