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02 December, 2020
 
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Greek FM makes impromptu visit to Cyprus

Nicosia and Athens seek ways to deter Turkey from activities in eastern Mediterranean

Newsroom

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias is on a surprise one-day trip to the Republic of Cyprus on Tuesday for talks with his Cypriot counterpart Nikos Christodoulides.

(Click here for an update to the story)

According to local media, it was announced on Monday afternoon that Dendias would fly to the island on Tuesday where he would pay a morning visit to President Nicos Anastasiades at the presidential residence on Troodos Mountain. The Greek minister will then travel to the capital where he will hold talks with Christodoulides, with official sources saying topics will focus on actions aimed at deterring Turkey from activities in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Diplomatic sources in both Athens and Nicosia would not confirm whether the surprise trip had to do with developments over establishing maritime boundaries between the two countries

Other topics of discussion, according to a Greek foreign ministry statement, are expected to include cooperation between Greece and Cyprus on a bilateral and European level as well as trilateral cooperation schemes in the region.

According to Kathimerini’s Apostolos Tomaras, diplomatic sources in both Athens and Nicosia would not confirm whether the surprise trip had to do with developments over establishing maritime boundaries between the two countries.

But the impromptu meeting comes a day after Republic of Cyprus Government Spokesperson Kyriacos Koushos, who said Monday that Nicosia was satisfied with messages being sent to Ankara from EU officials, also criticized the bloc over adopting “a policy of appeasement” in dealing with Turkey.

“We see the EU reacting, we see statements made by Mr Josep Borell that are satisfactory to us. Nevertheless, we believe that a policy of appeasing Turkey and the practice of sending solidarity messages are not enough to deter Turkey from unlawful activities,” Koushos said.

According to a Cypriot foreign ministry statement, Dendias and Christodoulides will meet privately and then the two ministers will be joined by their teams. Reports said they were expected to compare notes ahead of an emergency meeting on Wednesday when EU leaders will discuss the situation in Belarus.

Last week Dendias implied that a list of sanctions against Ankara, being drawn up by the FAC, would be the focus of informal discussions in Berlin in late August.

The Greek foreign minister recently held talks with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, right before the US top diplomat also met with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.

Dendias and Christodoulides are expected to make public statements on Tuesday afternoon.

TAGS
Cyprus  |  Greece  |  Turkey  |  EU  |  Belarus  |  politics  |  maritime zones  |  natural gas  |  Dendias  |  Christodoulides

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