Mitsotakis responds to Erdoğan's claim about a "Turkish" minority in Greece

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Regarding the Muslim minority of Thrace, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis responded to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who spoke of a "Turkish minority" in violation of the Treaty of Lausanne.

"Thrace is an example of the harmonious coexistence of Christians and Muslims. And we want to ensure equal opportunities in practice. The identification of the minority as the Treaty of Lausanne determines is Muslim," stressed the Prime Minister in response to the claim of Erdoğan, who verbally insisted, twice, on speaking of the Turkish minority of Western Thrace.

After the prime minister answered the Turkish president, Erdoğan did not add anything else while he applauded Kyriakos Mitsotakis. Immediately after that, they shook hands, took pictures and left.

Watch the video of Kyriakos Mitsotakis' response to Recep Tayyip Erdoğan about the Muslim minority of Thrace from 19:32 onwards:

Erdoğan's claim about the Turkish minority in Thrace

In detail, the Turkish president said: "The Turkish minority in Greece and the Roma community in Turkey are structural elements of our human and cultural wealth", noting that he expressed expectations for the improvement of the situation of the "Turkish minority" in Western Thrace.

The answer Mitsotakis

"For me, Thrace is an example of harmonious coexistence of Christians and Muslims, and our Muslim fellow citizens have, and we always strive to ensure in practice equal opportunities. The definition of the minority as Muslim is determined by the Treaty of Lausanne itself. This climate of harmonious coexistence is our duty; it is the duty of the Greek legal order to ensure and strengthen it. And I want to assure you and, of course, also assure all our Muslim fellow citizens that in this direction, the Greek government will continue to work day and night," answered Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.

The good atmosphere between Mitsotakis - Erdoğan

From the moment the Turkish president arrived in Greece, the photos capture the good atmosphere between Athens and Ankara, showing Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Recep Tayyip Erdoğan smiling and being photographed hugging.

Therefore, the interpersonal climate is very good, so Erdoğan did not take the floor after the prime minister's response to his claims about the Turkish minority in Thrace, even though it was outside the protocol as the two sides had agreed to make a position each without accepting questions.

Therefore, instead of making any clarifying statement and commentary that he might have wanted, the Turkish president applauded and took a photo with the prime minister before they left.

Photos of Mitsotakis - Erdogan before the joint statements:

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Photos of Mitsotakis - Erdogan after the joint statements:

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In a corresponding summit meeting in 2021, when the then Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias chose to respond to the then-Turkish counterpart of Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, tension was caused.

READ MORE: Erdoğan to Mitsotakis in Athens: “Turks and Greeks are brothers, there is no problem that cannot be solved.”

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