NEWS

Turkey must opt for one of two paths

Mitsotakis tells EU summit that Ankara must know the consequences of its choices in each case

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Turkey has a choice of two paths, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis told his European Union counterparts in Brussels on Friday, either to uphold international law or engage in provocation.

Speaking to the press after the EU summit in Brussels, Mitsotakis said he had underlined to his fellow leaders that “Turkey has to choose between two paths, one of sincere cooperation or of provocation – I think it knows the consequences of the continuing provocation. He added, “Greece has proven to be a force for legitimacy in the Eastern Mediterranean.”

Mitsotakis also stressed the importance the East Med has acquired with the energy crisis. “What is happening in the Eastern Mediterranean now has a geopolitical and energy significance for the EU,” he said.

Referring to the energy crisis, he said he called for “a pan-European response” and raised the possibility of the transfer of liquefied natural gas from Egypt to Greece, noting that this would not concern the energy efficiency of Greece but could contribute to the European gas supply. “I also had the opportunity to point out to our partners the great importance of the Mediterranean basin in terms of natural gas. Also, the Eastern Mediterranean basin can give us cheap electricity against the backdrop of the power interconnection agreement between Greece and Egypt,” Mitsotakis noted.

This week he referred to the vast areas of unutilized land in Egypt that could be used for solar energy that could be exported to Europe, while noting that the North African country’s power grid should be connected to Europe’s.

He also stressed that Greece has taken measures to address the energy crisis and rising prices, saying that “our initiatives are in line with the toolbox set by the EU to address the situation.”

Furthermore, Mitsotakis said it was positive that “we asked the Commission to make an assessment of the energy market, to identify distortions and to make proposals on how to fix the problems and increases.”

“We asked for the possibility of the EU to buy gas, as the EU,” he said, underlining the “special importance of the East Med basin as a of natural gas supplier.”

On migration, Mitsotakis welcomed the fact that the final text of the summit explicitly calls on Turkey to comply with the 2016 agreement with the EU to stem migration and refugee flows to Greece.