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Greek PM Mitsotakis: No Talks With Turkey as Long as Provocations Continue

Kyriakos Mitsotakis meets with German FM Heiko Maas. Credit: AMNA

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said on Tuesday that dialogue with Turkey is stalled following the resumption of activity by Oruc Reis and the reopening of Famagusta’s Varosha beach front.
Speaking after a meeting with visiting Germany’s Foreign Affairs Minister Heiko Maas, Mitsotakis noted the recent European Council meeting which made it quite clear “that if unilateral action and provocations by Turkey continue in violation of International Law, we – as the European Union – will use all available tools and options.”
The Greek premier said that his country has every intention to start a productive dialogue with Turkey. He told Maas: “As you know, with the mediation of Germany, we agreed – at least twice – to restart exploratory contacts from where they left off in March 2016, with the aim of reaching an agreement on the demarcation of our maritime zones.”
But instead, he said, “Turkey decides to send out Oruc Reis sailing in the Greek Exclusive Economic Zone.”
On his part, Maas expressed his surprise at Turkey’s recent actions, and said all these “contravene the spirit of what we agreed on.”
He expressed understanding for Athens being “not simply surprised, but angry as well, as, again – this is not the first time – what we had planned initially has been interrupted by provocations by the Turkish side.”
The purpose of his visit to Nicosia and Athens was to “announce and show in action the solidarity and support Greece enjoys by all of us in the European Union and Germany,” Maas underlined.

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