Lavrov after meeting Dendias: Greece is an important partner, Kiev’s statements are an open provocation

Sergey Lavrov

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov stressed on Friday the importance of fulfilling the Minsk Agreements to resolve situation in eastern Ukraine and using the United Nations Security Council resolutions to resolve Cyprus.

As the Russian foreign minister stressed during a press conference following his meeting with Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias in Moscow, “there is no alternative but to fulfill the Minsk Agreements.”

At the same time, he conveyed Russia’s “serious concern” over Kiev’s statements, noting that they were an “open provocation” and a “violation of what was agreed.”

In this context, and answering a relevant question, Russia’s top diplomat also expressed Moscow’s concern about the recent developments in the Donbass region, regarding reports about bombings.

He stressed that Kiev’s statements that it would not hold a direct dialogue with the self-proclaimed republics of Donetsk and Lugansk are a denial of the implementation of the Minsk Agreements.

Developments in Ukraine, Lavrov said, were put on the table during a meeting with Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias, as the two also discussed Russia’s proposals for security guarantees.

At the same time, the Cyprus issue was on the agenda, as well as the developments in the Middle East.

Regarding the Cyprus issue, the Russian Foreign Minister, answering a relevant question, reiterated Moscow’s position on the need to resolve the issue on the basis of UN Security Council resolutions.

Lavrov, referring to his conversation with Dendias, spoke of “very positive talks”, noting that the two sides have regular contacts, as he also noted that this is the “fifth meeting” of the two Foreign Ministers.

Referring to Greek-Russian relations, the Russian Foreign Minister stressed that “Greece is an important partner” for Russia.

He said the two discussed the agreements reached by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis during their talks in Sochi in December 2021.

Lavrov also referred to bilateral trade, which grew by 67% in 2021, setting a record since 2013, while expressing hope that this trend will continue.

He also spoke about “positive dynamics” regarding gas supplies in Greece, emphasizing that the reliability of Russian supplies to our country was confirmed.

The Russian also referred to his country’s assistance to Greece last summer, when the latter was hit by catastrophic fires.

He noted that “good cooperation” between the two countries in dealing with emergencies proved, but also Russia’s readiness to assists.

In the context of the Joint Year of Greek-Russian History, Lavrov pointed out that the two sides are expected to prepare for the closing ceremony this summer, which, as he said, will take place in Russia.

Also, it was agreed to continue the contacts between the two Foreign Ministries.

The statements following the Dendias-Lavrov meeting in Moscow.

READ MORE: Greek FM Dendias in Moscow: We back the Minsk agreement, Ukraine conflict will have no winner.