Participation of CHOD at the CVEOs International Conference in the USA

   The CHOD Lieutenant General Ilias Leontaris, upon an invitation of the US Armed Forces Commander, General Joseph F. Dunford US MC, participated from October 15 to October 17 at the Armed Forces Chiefs’ conference on “Countering Violent Extremist Organizations” held in the Joint Base Andrews, in Washington DC, USA. (

   The aim of the conference was to highlight the continuing cross-border’s nature of the threat of violent extremism, to promote unity of effort when planning to deal with it and to develop a coherent strategy through the exchange of lessons learned from the relevant military activities currently in progress at the international level.

   The conference was attended by the Chiefs of the Armed Forces from 82 countries as well as heads of Strategic Commands of the USA.

   The conference covered 4 thematic sections, as follows:

    • "Apply military pressure", where there was a presentation on the under way missions at the international level to deal with the threats posed by violent extremism.

    • "Security Cooperation and Capacity Building", during which the need for the multinational cooperation and the strengthening of the military co-operation, particularly in the crucial area of intelligence exchange, was confirmed, and

    • "Counter Foreign Terrorist Fighters"

    • "Counter Violent Extremist", in which the contemporary context of violent extremism internationally was analysed, along with possible ways to address it.

   On the sidelines of the conference he had contacts with his counterparts, General Joseph F. Dunford US MC of the USA, Lieutenant General Gadi Eizenkot of Israel, Lieutenant General Mahmoud Freihat of Jordan, Lieutenant General Andrey Botsev of Bulgaria, General Claudio Graziano of Italy, Lieutenant General Mohammed Farid Hegazy of Egypt, General Eberhard Zorn of Germany and Admiral Evangelos Apostolakis HN of Greece, as well as with the EU Military Committee President General Michael Kostarakos, and other participants.

   During his stay in Washington, D.C., the Chief:

    • visited the Embassy of the Republic of Cyprus in the United States and met with Ambassador Lysiotis Marios and had individual meetings with:

    • the US Army Chief of Staff General Mark A. Milley in the Pentagon (

    • the United States Director of the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) Lieutenant General Robert P. Ashley, Jr. and

    • the Director for Strategic Plans and Policy of the American Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS/J5) Lieutenant General Richard D. Clarke.

   In addition, the Chief in Washington, D.C. had contacts with:

    • the President and the Chief Operating Officer of the American Hellenic Institute (, Mr. Nick Larigakis, and

    • the Executive Director of the Hellenic American Leadership Council (, Mr. Endy Zemenides

   During his visit to New York City, he met with the Permanent Representative of the Republic of Cyprus to the United Nations, Ambassador Cornelios Corneliou and had informative meetings with Mr. Jean-Pierre Lacroix, UN Under- Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, as well as with his Military Advisor on the same matters, Lieutenant General Carlos Humberto Loitey.

   In New York City he also met the Consul General of the Republic of Cyprus, Mr. Alexis Phedonos - Vadet, with President Kyriakos Papastylianou and executives of the World Federation of Overseas Cypriots (POMAK,, as well as with the President Mr. Philip Christopher and members of the International Coordinating Committee-"Justice for Cyprus" (PSEKA,

   The National Guard’s Chief's program was completed with a wreath laying at the Tomb of the Unknowns at the Arlington National Cemetery. (