Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis is expected to meet with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, on Wednesday, at 18:00 (Athens time), on the sidelines of the UN assembly. This is the second meeting between the two leaders in a short period of time. They last met in July, in Vilnius.
The preparation of the agenda for the meeting dominated the meeting of Foreign Minister George Gerapetritis with his Turkish counterpart Hakan Fidan, at the headquarters of the United Nations in New York. After the meeting, a series of contacts will be launched, during which issues concerning the relations and cooperation of the two countries will be discussed. In this dialogue, Greece has specific “red lines”, meaning that it does not enter into any discussion about territorial integrity and territorial sovereignty.
What does Greece expect from the meeting?
Greece expects to confirm the mutual will for calm in the Greek-Turkish relations. The meeting follows the first meeting, which the two leaders had after their re-election last July on the sidelines of the NATO Summit in Vilnius, Lithuania.
In this specific meeting, the road map of the next contacts of the two countries was defined in the framework of the three axes that were agreed in Vilnius:
- political dialogue,
- confidence building measures, and
- positive agenda, in areas such as tourism, investment, agriculture, trade, shipping, climate crisis.
In addition, the same sources noted that Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Recep Tayyip Erdogan are expected to discuss the details of the meeting of the Supreme Cooperation Council, which, as agreed during their last meeting in Vilnius, will be held in Thessaloniki by the end of the year.
Government officials attach great importance to the restoration of communication channels with Turkey at all levels, as well as to the regular contacts that the two foreign ministers now have. According to the same sources, “the constant pursuit of Athens is to be able to talk with Turkey, to be able to accept that our issues can only be resolved on the basis of International Law and the rules of good neighborliness and when we disagree not to take things to extremes and not to have tensions, like the ones we had in the past with Turkey’s responsibility.”
Government sources reaffirmed that issues that have to do with national sovereignty, the national integrity of the country, will never be brought to the negotiation table from the Greek side.