Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan rejected efforts by NATO leaders in Madrid to mediate a meeting with Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, the Anadolu Agency reported on Friday.
According to the state-run news agency, Erdogan refused a proposal to sit down with the Greek premier in a bid to de-escalate heightened tensions between the two neighbors, because “Athens continues to militarize Aegean islands.”
Erdogan’s comment comes after Mitsotakis on Thursday said that the channels of communication need to remain open between Athens and Ankara after Erdogan last month severed all ties with the Greek premier.
Flying back from Madrid, however, Erdogan continued be dismissive of the Greek prime minister, telling reporters that Mitsotakis needs to “pull himself together.”
“As long as he doesn’t pull himself together, it is not possible for us to meet,” Erdogan said, according to Reuters.