Pyatt: Strategic dialogue a recognition of ‘favorable moment in US-Greece relations’


US Ambassador to Greece Geoffrey Pyatt has described the upcoming strategic dialogue between Greece and the United States as a testimony to “a particularly favorable moment” in bilateral relations.

“We see the strategic dialogue as a concrete manifestation of the investment that the United States is making in our alliance with Greece, our recognition of a particularly favorable moment in US-Greece relations, but also the important geopolitical dynamic around Greece right now,” Pyatt said in an interview with the state-run Athens-Macedonian News Agency (ANA-MPA).

The US ambassador spoke of a variety of challenges arising from the Eastern Mediterranean region, including energy, migration and counter-terrorism policies.

“The pillars of the strategic dialogue are designed to reflect all the areas where we are working together,” said Pyatt, adding that talks will focus on energy, regional cooperation, defense and security cooperation, trade and investment, and counter-terrorism.

The talks are scheduled to take place in Washington on December 13.

Strategic convergence

Asked about his cooperation with the Greek authorities, Pyatt said that “our relationship with Greece is stronger than it has been in many years. That’s thanks to very hard work by the government of Greece, by Greek authorities and also by the US government.”

“This also reflects a strategic convergence, the convergence of our interests. Ultimately countries act according to their interests. We have made a strategic judgement that Greece is an ideal partner for the United States as we seek to build stability and prosperity in this complicated region,” Pyatt said, adding that Athens and Washington share key interests with regards to the Western Balkans, Turkey, and stability in the wider Eastern Mediterranean region.

Prespes deal

During his interview, Pyatt reiterated Washington’s support for the name deal signed between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM).

“This vision will be vindicated by history,” he said.

Referring to domestic opposition to the name accord, Paytt said, “I hope that both politicians but also society will recognize that you are gaining much more than is being given up in terms of the Prespes agreement and the opportunities that it will unlock.”

“The Prespes agreement has had a very important impact on perceptions of Greece as a security partner for the United States and for NATO, perceptions of the role that Greece can play in helping to build a more stable and prosperous region,” he added.