“Greece seeks dialogue but it will not cede anything that belongs to her based on international law. With seriousness, lucidity, self-confidence, and national unity we have nothing to fear,” writes Foreign Minister Yorgos Katrougalos in an article in the Athens daily Ta Nea.
“The escalation of Turkey’s provocations in Cyprus and the continuing tensions in the Aegean do not exhibit strength but rather weakness,” Katrougalos noted.
“Our country steadfastly follows a policy that is based on respect for international law. Obviously that does not mean giving in to pressure. We steadfastly fend off every effort at revisionism and we insist on resolving disputes through dialogue....As regards relations between states, justice does not suffice if it is not based on diplomatic strength. That is why we are coordinating our steps with Cyprus so that its sovereign rights will not be threatened in the least and so that we can forge a clear European front to defend legality and confirm Cyprus’ sovereign rights in its EEZ, which are sovereign rights of the EU. The European Council (summit) at the end of the week is crucial,” the minister underlined.
“We are attempting to de-escalate tensions in the Aegean - which entail dangers of an accident – with continuing discussions on implementation of Confidence Building Measures (CBMs) agreed to over the last decades. It is paradoxical that those who charge that the PM by convening the Government Council on Foreign Affairs and Defence (KYSEA) supposedly increased regional tension were the same people who were critical of continuing dialogue on CBMs that aimed at de-escalation,” Katrougalos stated.