HomeGreeceInterview of Alternate Minister of Foreign Affairs Miltiadis Varvitsiotis with Le Figaro's...

Interview of Alternate Minister of Foreign Affairs Miltiadis Varvitsiotis with Le Figaro’s Alexia Kefalas – main points

Upon arriving today in Paris for a two-day visit focused on EU-Turkey relations, Alternate Minister of Foreign Affairs Miltiadis Varvitsiotis sent a clear message to Turkey in his statements to Le Figaro’s Alexia Kefalas.

“Turkey must comply with International Law and stop its provocative actions. It must show in concrete terms it is interested in the region’s security and in cooperating with Greece and Europe”, he stressed to the French daily.

Shortly before his meeting with his counterpart Clément Beaune and other French officials, Mr. Varvitsiotis underscored that, at recent EU Summits, the European partners agreed that Turkey’s provocative conduct is not a purely Greek-Turkish problem for the European Union, but a broader problem of regional security and geopolitical strategy at its southeastern borders. This, he pointed out, is why the EU sent a clear message to Turkey, urging it to choose the path it will follow: that of unilateral action, intransigence and belligerent rhetoric of the 19th century, or the path of international cooperation, understanding and diplomacy. “Turkey must choose”, he said.

He also reminded that last year “we saw an unprecedented escalation of tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean, due to Turkey’s illegal and provocative behaviour, which jeopardised the region’s security and stability”.

As pointed out in Le Figaro’s article, the Alternate Foreign Minister’s trip to France is part of a wider effort to mobilise European partners and strengthen Greek positions ahead of the European Council of 25 March.

The agenda of the talks with his French counterpart, which will be held this afternoon in Paris, also includes European coordination to tackle COVID-19, the European vaccination certificate, migration, the Conference on the Future of Europe, the Recovery Fund, EU’s Social Dimension, EU enlargement in the Western Balkans, EU-Russia relations, Greek-French bilateral political, economic-commercial and cultural relations, and the Cyprus issue.

During his two-day stay in Paris, the Alternate Minister will have meetings with members of the French National Assembly and the French Senate. More specifically, today he will meet with delegations from the Greek-French Friendship Groups of the National Assembly and the Senate, and tomorrow he will visit the French National Assembly to meet with the Chair of the Parliamentary Committee on European Affairs, Sabine Thillaye.


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