After Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias met his Turkish counterpart Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu on the sidelines of the GLOBSEC Bratislava Global Security Forum last week, in a meeting described as “almost jovial,” it appears that all the smiles and formalities by Dendias have achieved nothing, especially as Turkey violated United Nations resolutions to re-open a part of the Cypriot ghost town of Varosha and announced new intentions to violate Greece’s sovereign rights in the East Mediterranean.
Given Dendias’ unique position to firmly and strongly defend Greece’s position against Çavuşoğlu, he instead once again hoped that Turkey could be talked into its senses, a method that has time and again proven to fail, but yet insisted on.
The frustration in the Greek Foreign Ministry is visibly seen with their latest press release.
“The new illegal Turkish Navtex for illegal searches south of Kastelorizo on the Greek continental shelf, at a distance of only 6.5 nm. from the Greek coast, is a major escalation and a direct threat to peace and security in the region” the statement said, adding “just a few days after the meeting of the Foreign Ministers of Greece and Turkey, during which the Turkish side pledged to propose a date for exploratory contacts, its unreliability is demonstrated again as well as the fact that Turkey sincerely does not want dialogue.”
The Greek Foreign Ministry made indirect references to the Ottoman Empire by stating that Turkey “insists on the aggressive and illegal tactics of past centuries, clearly confirming its role as the pre-eminent factor of instability and delinquency in the region. From Libya to the Aegean and Cyprus, Syria, Iraq and now Nagorno-Karabakh.”
“[Turkey] systematically ignores International Law, International Maritime Law and the rules of good neighborliness. It energizes any attempt at dialogue, ignoring the urgings of the International Community. It is provocatively indifferent to the European Union’s urges to comply with international law, as a self-evident condition of every step forward in Euro-Turkish relations. We call on Turkey to immediately reverse its decision,” the statement continued.
“To immediately end its illegal actions through which it systematically undermines peace and security in the region. Greece, as a modern European state, is not blackmailed. It will continue to defend its sovereignty and sovereign rights, while contributing to the consolidation of regional security and stability,” the statement concluded.
Meanwhile, on the sidelines of a European Union Foreign Affairs meeting, Dendias said in a video:
“I explained the obvious: what is the common denominator in all of the problematic situations faced in the region: Nagorno-Karabakh, Syria, Iraq, Cyprus, South-Eastern Mediterranean. The common denominator is Turkey.”