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Sunday, December 3, 2023

Moderate optimism Mitsotakis after the meetings with Erdogan

“Turkey has realized that it is to its advantage not to cut the bridges with Europe but to a certain extent with the United States,” said the Greek Prime Minister, in an interview on Alpha TV.

The Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis expresses moderate optimism for Greek-Turkish relations, in an interview on Alpha TV, referring to his recent meetings with the President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, at the NATO Summit in Brussels and on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York.

“I am modestly optimistic, after two meetings we had with Mr. Erdogan after the elections in Turkey and Greece, that we can now be more positive about the prospects of Greek-Turkish relations,” said the Greek Prime Minister.

As he estimated, “Turkey has realized that it is to its advantage not to cut the bridges with Europe but to a certain extent with the United States”, “since the United States-Greece relationship is geostrategic”, he added.

At the same time, Mr. Mitsotakis underlined that it is an opportunity for both countries to put aside past tensions and extreme rhetoric, now looking for a way to get along.

“And if we cannot resolve our one big difference immediately, which is the demarcation of the maritime zones, continental shelf and EEZ, that is, in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean, let us not be on the verge of a heated episode”, he stressed.

He also pointed out that there are many issues of the so-called positive agenda, which can be launched, while he also made special mention of the possibilities of cooperation on the immigration issue.

As Mr. Mitsotakis said, his recent meetings with Mr. Erdogan have been conducted in a good atmosphere and with positive personal chemistry.

“But I’m not naive, I’m not naive. I have also seen mutations from the Turkish leadership in the past. I believe and hope that this time we won’t see them,” he said.

“We have an important event ahead of us, which is the Supreme Cooperation Council in Thessaloniki. I believe it is to the benefit of both countries to enter the final stretch of preparation for this Supreme Council maintaining the good climate that has been built and which I ultimately believe is the climate that, you know, the citizens of both peoples want.” concluded the Greek Prime Minister.

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