Wednesday April 23, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
23o C
15o 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)  
Tunisian sought over employment scam
FBI seeks to identify victims of suspected US child molester who worked abroad, including Greece
Tunnel boring for Thessaloniki metro to resume after two years of inactivity
Greek leftists opt for ‘more suitable’ Euro Parliament candidate
Greece sees 2013 primary budget surplus at 1.5 bln euros, says deputy finance minister
Greece's general government primary surplus last year, as calculated by the country's international lenders, is estimated at 1.5 billion euros ($2.07 billion), Greece's deputy finance minist...
Greek debt swells again as Samaras looks to creditors for relief
Greek state debt surged to the highest in the euro era last year, underscoring the urgency of Prime Minister Antonis Samaras’s push to lower the cost of the government’s bailout loans. The c...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
Reds and Greens stay alive in Euroleague
Easter – and home advantage – worked wonders for Panathinaikos and Olympiakos who stayed alive in the Euroleague play-offs beating CSKA and Real Madrid respectively on Monday in Greece. Shak...
BASKETBALL
Greens lose badly as CSKA Moscow
Panathinaikos has a mountain to climb in order to reach the Final Four of the Euroleague after losing at CSKA Moscow on Friday for a second time in two days, only this time it was comprehens...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
Reality´s other side
There is plenty of evidence pointing to the fact that the country’s real economy has hit rock bottom and is currently entering a phase of growth. Those who know the market well tend to suppo...
EDITORIAL
Enough barbarity
The events that took place on Santorini on Holy Saturday, when seven people were injured, including an American tourist who sustained life-threatening injuries, after a firecracker was throw...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Greece sees 2013 primary budget surplus at 1.5 bln euros, says deputy finance minister
2. Greek debt swells again as Samaras looks to creditors for relief
3. Tunisian sought over employment scam
4. FBI seeks to identify victims of suspected US child molester who worked abroad, including Greece
5. Corfu property market puts up resistance to pressures
6. Major tourism promotion at travel fair in Latin America
more news
Today
This Week
1. FBI seeks to identify victims of suspected US child molester who worked abroad, including Greece
2. Tunisian sought over employment scam
3. Greek debt swells again as Samaras looks to creditors for relief
4. Greece sees 2013 primary budget surplus at 1.5 bln euros, says deputy finance minister
5. Three more arrests made on Santorini over Easter injuries [Update]
6. PM Samaras sees Greek bond yields falling more
Today
This Week
1. Greece's market return mirrors return of tourists
2. Greece startup leaders say they can’t break jobless cycle alone
3. Ground-breaking Good Friday mass signals thaw in Cyprus
4. Mayoral candidates clash over Athens mosque plans
5. Government looks to kick on
6. Greece offers to help find Turkish F-16 lost in 1996
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.