Greek PM warns against rise in tensions in eastern Mediterranean

In an interview with Cyprus’s Sigma television and Simerini newspaper, Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras indicated that an increase in tensions in the eastern Mediterranean would be “a very negative development,” referring to the continuing presence of a Turkish seismic vessel off the southern coast of Cyprus.

Samaras, who was in Nicosia on Friday ahead of a trilateral summit in Cairo, said that caution, patience and persistence were needed. “In international politics what always wins is long-term planning and not spasmodic reactions.”

The Greek PM said it was important for Greece to continue its progress toward economic recovery to avoid becoming “a weak link in a destabilized Middle East.” “There is no doubt about our sovereign rights, they are inalienable,” he said. But he emphasized the significance of support for Greece by other nations. “In international politics, on the chessboard where all the countries are, it is not enough to be right but to have adequate support if you are to be vindicated.”

Samaras is to meet with Anastasiades on Friday before the pair travel to Cairo for trilateral talks with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi which are expected to focus on energy cooperation in the Eastern Mediterranean. Talks with Anastasiades in Nicosia were expected to focus on formulating a joint stance opposite Ankara’s continuing provocations off the southern coast off Cyprus where Cypriot authorities have licenses to drill for hydrocarbons.

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.