Greece, Turkey to cooperate on resolving bilateral issues

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias (R) meets with visiting Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in Athens, Greece, on May 31, 2021.

Athens, (Asian independent) Greece and Turkey have agreed to continue cooperation on a positive agenda to resolve pending bilateral issues, Greek Minister of Foreign Affairs Nikos Dendias and his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu said.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis will hold a meeting on the sidelines of the upcoming NATO summit on June 14 in Brussels, they announced during a joint press conference here on Monday.

Cavusoglu paid a visit to Greece, following Dendias’ recent visit to Turkey, as the two neighbouring countries continue efforts to settle through dialogue longstanding differences over borders and other issues, reports Xinhua news agency.

“We are fully aware of the different, and in several serious issues, of the diametrically opposed positions that we and Turkey have,” Dendias said during the press conference that was broadcast on Greek national broadcaster ERT.

“The purpose of today’s meeting was to attempt a process of reaching an initial understanding, and if possible, the gradual normalisation of the situation in the long term,” he said.

During the latest round of talks the two sides agreed to enhance cooperation in economy and trade and to mutually recognise Covid-19 certificates, so that the citizens of Greece and Turkey who have been vaccinated or have a negative test, can visit the other side to facilitate tourism, Dendias said.

There are many pending issues that need to be addressed and both sides believe that talks should be conducted on the basis of international law and shared interests, Cavusoglu said, according to ERT’s translation.

The Turkish official added that Turkey and Greece agreed to continue positive cooperation, ERT reported.

During his visit, Cavusoglu was also received by the Greek Prime Mminister.

No statements were made after this meeting.

Talks were held in a good atmosphere and both sides reiterated willingness to promote a positive agenda, Greek national news agency AMNA reported, citing Greek government sources.