Greece-Turkey: "I hope the Mediterranean and Aegean can be a 'Sea of Friendship'," says Turkish DM

turkey Greek Defense Minister Nikos Panagiotopoulos Turkish Defence Hulusi Akar

Greek National Defence Minister Nikos Panagiotopoulos visited earthquake-stricken areas in Turkey on Tuesday following an invitation by his Turkish counterpart Hulusi Akar.

At the country's Disaster & Crisis Coordination & Management Centre in Antakya (Antioch), Akar briefed the Greek minister on the latest developments and the current situation.

The two ministers then flew over disaster areas on a helicopter and visited a hospital and temporary accommodations housing people who lost their homes in the Feb. 6 earthquakes.

2 6

"I observed the magnitude of the destruction, but I also observed the great effort to rebuild the area," Panagiotopoulos said.

He also reiterated "the statement of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, who said that we will try to support Türkiye to the extent we can as it faces the long-term consequences of this great humanitarian disaster."

1 15

Some of these extreme disasters occur partly due to climate change, noted Panagiotopoulos, but they also comprise "a new type of security challenge that will concern us all, and we will have to find ways to deal with them because they will surely come, they will hit countries and our peoples, and they should be addressed, and we should work on it, maybe jointly as well."

“I sincerely believe that Türkiye and Greece can resolve their issues in a peaceful way. We are two neighbors that have a multidimensional friendship like the multidimensional problems. We hope we can engage in dialogue without waiting for another disaster,” Akar said.

Greece was one of the first countries to provide relief and search and rescue support after the earthquakes.

Akar said they hoped that the Mediterranean and Aegean would be a “sea of friendship” between the two countries and thanked his counterpart for his visit.

READ MORE: Viral video of Erdoğan handing out money to small children!