Greece’s Foreign Minister, Nikos Dendias and his Cypriot counterpart, Nikos Christodoulides signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Political Consultations and Technical Cooperation between the two foreign ministries on Monday.
During the meeting, Dendias criticised Turkey’s activities in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean, saying it is leading Turkey to international isolation.
“We discussed Turkey’s illegal actions, which are not limited to Cyprus’ exclusive economic zone. Turkey must understand that this behaviour is counterproductive and drives it into isolation,” he stated during a joint press conference with Christodoulides.
He also reiterated that the MoU on maritime borders signed between Turkey and Libya is invalid and will further destabilise Libya and the wider region. “It undermines the peace and security of the Eastern Mediterranean,” and it is important that countries in the region recognise its illegality, he added. Dendias is expected to discuss this issue with the leaderships of Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia in future trips.
“It is particularly important that the right and necessary messages are sent by the European Union to Turkey,” Christodoulides added during the press conference.
On the possible ceasefire in Libya, the Cypriot FM said it was a step in the right direction, noting that Turkey bears some of the responsibility for the situation in the country.
Christodoulides also noted the significance of the meeting with his Greek counterpart underlining “that the subsequent moves of the two countries are more coordinated, more targeted and more effective.”
Responding to a question about EU targeted measures against Turkey, he said that the first substantive discussion on this issue is scheduled to be held in Brussels next week.
*Image credit: Alexander Vlachos