N. Dendias: Ankara must prove in practice that it wants a constructive dialogue
The message that Greece will continue to defend its interests, having as a compass full respect for international law and in particular the law of the sea, is sent in an interview granted Sunday evening by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nikos Dendias.
Nikos Dendias also maintains that Ankara must prove in practice that it wants a sincere and constructive dialogue, stressing that currently, unfortunately, through its fault, we have a dialogue of the deaf and specifies that Greece “consents” to practices irrational youth. Ottoman demands is unthinkable to exist.
Referring to Turkey’s current policy, he notes that it unfortunately has nothing to do with the policy of rapprochement with the EU and that with its expansionist neo-Ottoman policy it has managed to have problems with almost all States in its immediate vicinity. Styling Turkish actions, he qualifies them as totally unacceptable and emphasizes that they violate all notions of international law and common sense. He points out that one of the most typical examples – among many others – was the harassment by Turkey last September of the research vessel “Nautical Geo”, which was in the Greek exclusive economic zone, 10 miles away. sailors in eastern Crete. this point is a Turkish continental shelf.
Regarding the prospects for normalization of Greek-Turkish relations, he clearly underlines that they would exist provided that Turkey respects international law, stops threatening our country with war if it exercises its legal rights and violates the fundamental provisions of the Charter of United Nations. . “Despite the climate of tension that Turkey continues to cultivate, both on the ground and at the level of rhetoric, we consider it appropriate to maintain open channels of communication with the neighbor,” he added. conciliation with Turkey, always within the framework of the full protection of our sovereignty and our sovereign rights ”. At the same time, he notes that a significant part of Turkish society is still eagerly awaiting its European perspective.
“The future of the Western Balkans lies in the EU”
The Minister of Foreign Affairs then reminded North Macedonia, other countries in the region, international interlocutors and especially European partners, that the future of the Western Balkans lies in the EU. “The European perspective and the accession process itself are those which will ensure the stability of the countries and peoples of the region, economic development, prosperity, democratic reforms. This is the only way for the region to move forward, ”says Nikos Dendias characteristically.
At the same time, he recalls that there are other active forces in the region, in addition to the European forces, which aim to withdraw the Western Balkans from Europe, by offering so-called development aid, military cooperation, even cooperation in the field of education and even through organizations which have more relations with the Muslim Brotherhood and little or no connection with a modern European educational framework. Powers that invoke historical, cultural and religious traditions allegedly shared with the countries and peoples of the region, but essentially promote extreme ideologies and a destabilizing agenda, he adds.
In this context, he calls on the one hand on the whole of the Western Balkans to remain attached to their European trajectory and to turn their backs on the forces of isolation and destabilization, and on the other hand, the EU to maintain the momentum. of the enlargement process. return to their “Balkan past”.
Asked about the current political developments in North Macedonia, Nikos Dendias reiterates the need for a full, consistent and good faith implementation of the Prespa Agreement and notes that governments come and go, states and commitments, but they remain.
Referring to his contacts with North Macedonian officials over the past two months, he stressed that the two main questions put to him are his European perspective and how Greece can help in this direction, as well as strengthening bilateral ties in all sectors such as the economy, investment, energy, transport and defense. The surveillance of the airspace of our neighboring country by our Air Force is already tangible proof of the mutual benefit that can exist, he said. He also stressed to them that our country can, under certain conditions, become North Macedonia’s best friend in the future and that Greece looks forward to continuing cooperation in all sectors with any government that emerges from internal processes.
“Defense agreements with France and the United States are multipliers of the country’s political and defensive power”
Finally, concerning Greek foreign policy over the past two years, she affirms that our country has a say in regional developments, as evidenced by its invitation to the Conference on Libya convened by President Macron and makes particular reference to the agreements of defense with France. and the United States. “Defense agreements with France and the United States are multipliers of the country’s defensive and political power in the international environment and will be used. The countries with which we have signed the agreements strongly support Greece and have an interest in her being strong and stable. And of course, we must not ignore the defense agreement with the United Arab Emirates. ”Stressing the importance of these agreements, he recalls that they are the recognition of the strategic and stabilizing role that Greece plays from the Balkans to the Eastern Mediterranean and underlines that it is up to our country to use these agreements which will make it strong against the revisionist forces.
In addition, he notes that Greece is implementing a strategy to strengthen its relations with a number of countries, with which – like the countries of the African continent – relations were not so strong. Referring to his contacts in Rwanda yesterday, he said he hoped more such visits to countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America would follow soon, as the pandemic would allow. .