The invitation to Greece to attend an informal ministerial meeting on Syria on the sidelines of the Ministerial Meeting of the Global Coalition Against Daesh in Rome was “a significant … step that marks out return to meetings about the two countries that interest us in the broader region, and which are a source of problems, Syria and Libya,” Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias has said.
The meeting, organized by the United States, Italy and the UN Special Envoy for Syria Geir Pedersen, was attended by a limited number of states, which are involved or have a specific role in the developments in Syria.
Even though Daesh, the terrorist organization that styled itself the “Islamic State,” has lost territories in Syria and Iraq, it still has access to funds which allow it to continue its terrorist activities, Dendias is said to have told the meetings.
The minister said he remains concerned about the rising terrorist attacks in Africa, underlining that ethnic and religious minorities in the Middle East are the basic targets of terrorist attacks.
Greece will continue to contribute to the Global Coalition’s working group, towards the stabilization of territories recovered from the “Islamic State”, he added. In this context, he reiterated Greece’s support for Iraq’s development, and he referred to the forthcoming visit of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis to Baghdad and Erbil.
Commenting on the significance of the Rome meeting at large, the Dendias said that “ it is clear that the European Union as a whole is now gaining a sense of the need to tackle terrorism beyond its own borders,” adding that “it is obvious that we must give weight not only to Libya, but also to sub-Saharan Africa.”
“Europe must understand that its borders are not protected only from within its own borders. We need to get a broader geopolitical perspective.”