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Greece, Albania looking to The Hague over maritime zones

greece-albania-looking-to-the-hague-over-maritime-zones

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and his Albanian counterpart Edi Rama agreed on Monday to sign an arbitration agreement for reaching a settlement on the delimitation of the respective maritime zones of their two countries via the International Court of Justice at The Hague, after the general elections in Albania. 

The issue was discussed between the two leaders before the start of the NATO Summit in Brussels yesterday, along with Greek-Albanian relations and the European course of the Western Balkans, for which Mitsotakis reiterated Greece’s unfailing support.

Mitsotakis also restated Greece’s “steadfast interest in the ethnic Greek minority in southern Albania, as well as Albania’s progress in the fields of human rights and rule of law, which are among the prerequisites EU has demanded from Albania for progress in its accession talks,” his office said in a press release.

The Greek PM congratulated Rama on the appointment of Albania as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council in the two years 2022-23. For his part, Rama thanked Mitsotakis for the free distribution of 20,000 vaccines, which were delivered to Albania.

Earlier, Mitsotakis had a meeting with his British counterpart Boris Johnson, during which he reportedly briefed him on the positive epidemiological progress with regard to the coronavirus pandemic, which should allow the British government to lift restrictions on visits by UK tourists to Greece. He also briefed the UK leader on the recent developments in Greek-Turkish relations, stressing the need for the current the de-escalation to continue so that a climate of trust is gradually created between the two sides.

Regarding the Cyprus issue, Mitsotakis insisted that any subsequent steps toward the resumption of negotiations can be agreed only within the given and binding framework of the relevant Security Council Resolutions, which provide for a solution of a bizonal, bicommunal federation.

In addition, Mitsotakis thanked Johnson for the invitation to attend the Leaders’ Summit in Glasgow, within the framework of the 26th Conference on Climate Change (COP-26) in November, which he accepted.