Greece is ready to help Tunisia in its relations with the European Union, says FM

Greek Foreign Affairs Minister Nikos Dendias met with Tunisian President Kais Saied on Monday, during a visit to Tunis.

“I had the great opportunity and honour today to be received by the President of Tunisia and together we had a long and candid discussion on the prospects of the two countries, of Greece and Tunisia. How we can move forward, how we can find common grounds. On how Greece, through the European Union, can help Tunisia address not only the Covid-19 crisis, in which Tunisia was extremely successful, but also on the creation of growth in the Tunisian economy and creating a better future for the Tunisian people,” Dendias said in an official statement.

He also expressed appreciation for Tunisia’s stance on Libya that calls for a solution to the conflict by the Libyan people, without foreign powers and intervention. “It is only through the departure of all foreign powers and especially Turkey from Libya, that there is an opportunity to find a Libyan-led solution to this crisis.”

Dendias in closing conveyed an invitation to Saied by Greek President Katerina Sakellaropoulou to visit Athens.

Earlier, Greece’s Foreign Affairs Minister met with his Tunisian counterpart, Noureddine Erray.

In his opening remarks, Dendias stated that he is “very happy to be in Tunis today, which is among the first capitals I visit, following the outbreak of the Covid-19. Allow me to seize this opportunity to congratulate the Tunisian government, for its successful handling of this unprecedented crisis. Tunisia is one of the world champions in this field.”

The Greek Minister then pointed out that the solution to the Libyan crisis lies with Libyans, “without external intervention or foreign armies.”

“Tunisia can play a rather constructive role towards this solution,” he said, stressing that Greece is ready to help Tunisia in its relations with the European Union, as the latter supports its efforts to meet economic and development challenges. Greece also “recognises the constructive and stabilising role Tunisia plays in the region,” Dendias added.

The two ministers also signed a maritime transport agreement, which opens “new bonds of cooperation in a key area.”

On his part, Erray said the situation in Libya is not easy, but a solution to the conflict must be found on the basis of international law and the will of its people, because instability there carries serious repercussions.

Erray called on all sides in Libya to reach a domestic political solution, while he stressed that Tunisia rejects any external or military intervention in the country.

The meeting focused on furthering relations, the Tunisian minister said, particularly in the economic sector, and within the European-Mediterranean region. The agreement signed on maritime transport related to stronger bilateral economic and trade relations, he noted.