Tuesday October 21, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
24o C
11o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Samaras says democratic values key to NATO membership as Greece also eyes EU expansion

In a message that appeared to be directed at the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) and its potential renewed bid to join NATO when the organization holds its next summit in September, Prime Minister Antonis Samaras warned on Friday that any country wishing to become part of the alliance would have to prove it is willing to uphold “democratic values.”

Samaras made the comments after meeting NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen in Athens, a day after European Union defense ministers held an informal meeting in the Greek capital.

“Any new candidacy is evaluated. There are the pre-accession stages and each country must meet the criteria set by the alliance, which is a community of democratic values,” said Samaras.

His comments came a day after Foreign Minister Evangelos Venizelos made a similar comment in Skopje, where he met with FYROM officials. Venizelos suggested that there is more than FYROM’s name dispute with Greece that is preventing it from joining international institutions such as NATO.

Like Venizelos, Samaras focused on the issue of good-neighborly relations, adding that respect for human rights and freedom of expression should also be upheld.

Sources said that the possibility of a NATO enlargement in September were discussed during the meeting with Rasmussen. Samaras is believed to have expressed concerns about including FYROM based on democratic criteria rather than the ongoing name dispute.

During the talks, Samaras also asked for cooperation with Israel to become part of NATO’s agenda.

“As the holder of the presidency of the European Union, Greece is especially well placed to make sure that the countries of Europe do develop their capabilities and their strength. This would benefit NATO, the EU and the world,” said Rasmussen, who condemned the violence in Ukraine.

“We are in the cradle of democracy and democracy is the foundation of NATO. Democracy is in danger in the wider neighborhood. Greece has an active participation in the alliance,” he added.

Venizelos also completed on Friday his tour of the Western Balkans with a visit to Albania, where he met with Prime Minister Edi Rama. Venizelos said that it was a “basic priority” for Greece to ensure that Albania is given candidate status by the European Union before Greece’s presidency of the 28-nation bloc ends in June.

The Greek foreign minister also intends to review the “Thessaloniki Agenda” that Greece promoted when it last held the EU presidency in 2003. This foresees the induction of all Western Balkan states in the Union. Venizelos hopes to host a meeting between EU foreign ministers and diplomats from Southeastern Europe in Thessaloniki in April.

ekathimerini.com , Friday February 21, 2014 (20:37)  
Greek farmers warn they´re warming up for protests
Accomplice of Greece´s Number 1 fugitive arrested while trying to leave country
Trial over 2012 torture of Egyptian bakery worker in Salamina begins
Inmate injured in Patra prison yard brawl
Think-tank says political uncertainty slowing investment in Greece
Political uncertainty ahead of a presidential vote early next year is dampening investment appetite in Greece, the Athens-based IOBE think-tank said on Tuesday as it confirmed its previous f...
Tax debts to Greek state exceed 70 billion euros
Tax debts to the Greek state hit a new record in September, reaching a total of 70.16 billion euros from 69.24 billion euros in August, the General Secretariat for Public Revenues said on Tu...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
PAOK fans stop coach Markopoulos´s move to Olympiakos
Olympiakos is once again in the lookout for a new coach after the refusal of PAOK to release Soulis Markopoulos, while Panathinaikos defeated Kolossos on Rhodes on Monday to become the only ...
BASKETBALL
Reds lose to Nea Kifissia, search for new coach
Nea Kifissia recorded the biggest win of its short history in the top flight defeating Olympiakos 68-67 on Sunday, in a Basket League weekend marred by the abandonment of the Thessaloniki de...
Inside Sports
INTERVIEW
The past, present and future of the Greek debt crisis
For a decade, until mid-2012, Josef Ackermann was the CEO at Deutsche Bank. It was a position that earned him the nickname “shadow chancellor” of Germany and allowed him to play a decisive r...
COMMENTARY
Self-opposing coalition
Even though a number of polls see the total percentage of the two ruling parties trailing that of SYRIZA, New Democracy and PASOK are still in government and the leftists in opposition. This...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Greek farmers warn they´re warming up for protests
2. Accomplice of Greece´s Number 1 fugitive arrested while trying to leave country
3. Think-tank says political uncertainty slowing investment in Greece
4. Trial over 2012 torture of Egyptian bakery worker in Salamina begins
5. Tax debts to Greek state exceed 70 billion euros
6. Greek 2013 budget gap revised down to 1.8 pct/GDP
more news
Today
This Week
1. The past, present and future of the Greek debt crisis
2. Gang importing heroin into Greece busted
3. Gutsy rectors
4. Self-opposing coalition
5. Applications for heating oil subsidy set to start
6. SDOE to probe Proton Bank loan to Thessaloniki businessman
Today
This Week
1. Possible third figure in Amphipolis mosaic may be uncovered shortly
2. Greece to contribute 1 mln towards Gaza reconstruction
3. Greece nearing bailout exit, says gov't spokesperson after IMF talks
4. Istanbul skyscraper casts shadow over Greece's banking ambitions
5. Coalition shooting itself in the foot
6. GPO poll gives SYRIZA clear lead over New Democracy
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.