Dendias on Turkey sanctions: EU showed solidarity with Belarus and must show solidarity with Cyprus

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias Turkey

The Foreign Affairs Council has called on the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell and the European Commission to draw up proposals for sanctions against Turkey in light of its unacceptable conduct in the besieged city of Famagusta, diplomatic sources said on Tuesday.

The foreign ministers met in Luxembourg on Monday.

Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias stressed that the European Union must clearly set out the limits of what it is prepared to tolerate, in light of Turkey’s provocative behaviour.

Specifically, Borrell in his introductory remarks under the entry “Current Affairs” regarding the enclosed city of Famagusta referred to the relevant Statement made in July on behalf of the EU’s 27 member states.

The High Representative was clear that the situation was particularly worrying, as there had been no change in Turkey’s unacceptable actions.

He added that Turkey’s behaviour creates tension in Cyprus and undermines the resumption of negotiations for the settlement of the Cyprus problem.

Borrell also expressed his solidarity with both Cyprus and Greece.

He concluded that it was agreed to instruct the European External Action Service and the European Commission to prepare options with proposed measures against Turkey, which will be decided by the member states.

In the discussion that followed, Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides was the first to speak.

After presenting both the ongoing violations in the Varosha area and the harassment of Nautical Geo by Turkish warships, he stressed that Turkey does not respect either EU statements or the United Nations Security Council and that it continues to move outside the agreed framework regarding the settlement of the Cyprus issue.

In this context, he requested the preparation of relevant proposals by the European External Action Service (EEAS) and the European Commission, according to the same sources.

Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias fully supported the intervention of his Cypriot counterpart and stressed that a red line should be drawn regarding the illegal and unacceptable Turkish actions.

He stressed that, as the other member-states show solidarity with Belarus’ actions, there must be solidarity with Cyprus.

The proposal was adopted by acclamation by the Council, as at least nine other member-states strongly supported it, with no country objecting.

READ MORE: EU to prepare list of possible measures in response to Turkey’s opening of Varosha.

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