Greece now on equal footing with partners, says PM

Greece now on equal footing with partners, says PM

Highlighting a new era, Prime Kyriakos Mitsotakis and visiting German Chancellor Olaf Scholz referred to a “different” Greece during their joint statements on Thursday.

Mitsotakis stressed that Greeks are proud “of the credibility that our country has gained,” noting the more effectively it uses this credibility, “the more convincingly it can then claim new resources.”

With Greece now out of supervision, he said it is working with Germany together “from new positions for the common goals of our continent, away from roles of strong and weak or creditor and borrower of the past.”

He added that Greece is not “simply asking passively, as in the past, but discussing in an equal and creative way, contributing, during the pandemic, to the European digital passport, but also to the creation of the Recovery Fund and now playing a leading role in the development of a single Community energy policy for autonomy.”

The PM expressed optimism the energy issue could be closed on November 24 at the ministerial level and “not come back to us,” stressing, “The concerns of all member-states must be taken into account.”

Scholz agreed but added, “We have a long way to go at ministerial level to contain prices.”

“Energy prices must come down and we agreed that this should be done in solidarity. We have to look at having a way of storing gas together,” he said.

Earlier, the PM had referred to the broader context facing Europe, noting that “we are defending ourselves against the energy crisis, the pandemic and the challenges of our neighbors by shielding our defenses and alliances.”

With regard to Turkish provocations, Mitsotakis stressed that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan “is walking into a dead end” as everyone knows that the Greek islands do not threaten anyone and international conventions are not changed by illusions. Greece, he added, will guard the Greek and European borders and save lives in the Aegean. 

For his part, Scholz said that “good-neighborly relations between Greece and Turkey are important for NATO,” insisting that “challenging the sovereignty of a NATO partner is not acceptable.”

As for the upgraded bilateral relations, the PM noted Germany is one of the top investors in Greece “in tourism” and in the defense sector, while the two countries are leading the green transition.

As for the issue of war reparations, he said it “remains open” and “its settlement would be particularly beneficial.”

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