FM Kotzias comments on Cyprus issue talks, Libya and Egypt after FAC

A meeting on the Cyprus issue at the level of foreign ministers may be held in the second half of March, Greece’s Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias said on Monday in response to questions.

“It is possible that we will have a meeting of foreign ministers in the second half of March, as regards the guarantor powers, the president of the Cyprus Republic and the representative of the Turkish-Cypriot community,” Kotzias replied as he emerged from a meeting of the Foreign Affairs Council (FAC) in Brussels.

He also noted the need to handle Turkey as a “nervous power,” while clarifying that neither Turkey, nor the Aegean were discussed during the FAC, and referred to the need to strike a balance:

“We must not overlook or fail to take measures to prevent the expression of such nervousness but neither should we exaggerate, due to the fact that many of Turkey’s nervous actions have to do with its interior and the domestic confrontation,” Kotzias said.

The Greek foreign minister also commented on Libya, noting that many things would now be better if the interventions to destabilise Libya had not happened.

“We argued that the EU must do its utmost so that the forces of western Libya reach an understanding with those of the east – in other words, the government in Tripoli, where we will reopen our embassies, with the forces expressed by the secularist general Khalifa Haftar,” Kotzias said.

Regarding Egypt, Kotzias said the ministers had decided to invite their Egyptian counterpart to attend a meeting that EU foreign ministers will have in Brussels on March 6 and to “change the decision of 2013 – which was hostile toward Egypt – and launch a process of reconnection between Egypt and the EU.”