Israeli FM dampens pipeline expectations during Athens visit

Talks in Athens on Thursday between Foreign Minister Evangelos Venizelos and his Israeli counterpart Avigdor Lieberman indicated that the possibility of a pipeline being built to carry natural gas from Israel to Greece via Cyprus has diminished.

The Israeli government appeared keen on the project during talks with Greek officials in October but Lieberman insisted that the viability of the scheme would be decided by “private investors.” Venizelos, on the other hand, indicated that Greece still believes that state backing is crucial if the pipeline is going to be built.

“One aspect has to do with the private sector but there are also institutional, political and intergovernmental factors,” he said.