PM brushes off Turkish warnings

PM brushes off Turkish warnings

In a stern response to Turkey’s threats over Greek plans to extend territorial waters around the island of Crete, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis stressed on Friday that “Greece will not be told how to handle its sovereign claims.” 

Speaking from the island of Gavdos off Crete, which he visited on the occasion of Epiphany Day, Mitsotakis added that Greece is a “force of peace, but at the same time we are also a force of self-confidence.” Mistotakis urged Turkey, without naming it, to respect international law, which he said is the only basis for resolving disputes.

With regard to Greece’s energy plans, Mitsotakis said that prospecting has begun west of Gavdos for natural gas, “in order to determine whether there are deposits that the Hellenic Republic can exploit.”

“I call on neighboring states to enter into fruitful negotiations with Greece,” he said, adding that the 2020 agreement between Greece and Egypt designating an exclusive economic zone in the Eastern Mediterranean can serve as an example for a potential deal with Libya, as soon as a government emerges in the north African country with the authority to conclude such international agreements.

At the same time, Mitsotakis took advantage of his presence in Gavdos to make the case for developing the country’s outlying areas in a sustainable manner. There is a need, he stressed, to “develop a strategy for environmental protection and soft development.”

“As I have said many times, there are no two-tier Greeks for us, and our fellow citizens, the few who choose to live near the borders of our country, like here in Gavdos, deserve special care and protection,” he said.

Subscribe to our Newsletters

Enter your information below to receive our weekly newsletters with the latest insights, opinion pieces and current events straight to your inbox.

By signing up you are agreeing to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.