Both Greek and Russian officials on Tuesday hailed a scheduled visit later this week by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to Moscow as the beginning of a thaw following a frosty hiatus in relations between the two countries owing to a diplomatic spat this summer.
According to Dimitris Velanis, Tsipras’s adviser on Russian issues, the visit reaffirms the friendly ties and strategic partnership between the two countries.
“This is evidence of the continuation of our friendly relations and strategic partnership,” Velanis was quoted by Sputnik as saying.
A key aide to Russian President Vladimir Putin, Yuri Ushakov, was blunter. “This visit is of specific nature, as it is aimed at bringing an end to a turbulent period in the development of our bilateral relations,” Ushakov was quoted as saying by Russian news agency TASS.
The official reason for the timing of the meeting is to mark the 190th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Moscow and Athens.