Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias and his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu had a frank conversation on wide range of issues on Monday according to diplomatic sources, stressing however that the issues of the Aegean and the wider Eastern Mediterranean remain on the table, including Turkey’s insistence on maintaining its “casus belli”.
According to the same sources, Dendias stressed the intense Greek displeasure of the long-standing “casus belli” by the Turkish government triggered by Greece extending its territorial waters to 12 nautical miles.
The minister stated that the Greek government is in favor of constructive dialogue with Turkey based on international law, and in particular the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), before condemning the Turkish-Libyan memorandum as illegal.
The Greek foreign minister also consistently highlighted that bilateral Greek-Turkish relations are also part of Turkey’s relations with the wider European Union.
Dendias also brought up the issue of Turkish violations of Greek air space, the weaponization of migrants, the continued aggressive rhetoric by certain elements in Turkey, as well as renewed rhetoric concerning the Muslim minority of Thrace. Finally, Dendias also expressed his concern with the nuclear power plant under construction in Akkuyu, where however, in an act of good will the Turkish government agreed to provide information to reassure Greece through the Russian company in charge of the site.
The two ministers also discussed the issue of Cyprus, with the Greek side insisting that the only solution would be a bizonal, bicommunal federation, as set out by the Security Council.
“Insisting on solutions outside this framework are a violation of International Law, related decisions and the relevant resolutions of the European Council,” was stated during the conversation.
Finally, the two ministers spoke of the need for stability in Libya, especially in light of the upcoming elections this December.