Foreign minister in Cyprus: Greece hopes for a European Turkey

Foreign minister Nikos Kotzias said on Monday that Greece “always dreams and hopes for a European Turkey, with which we’ll have normal relations and normal borders”, after meeting with his Cypriot peer Nicos Christodoulides in Nicosia.

A European Turkey would mean a Turkey that does not occupy foreign land, a Turkey that will not seek guarantees or have interventionist claims in other countries, that will respect human rights domestically, and will not intervene in other countries, such as in Afrin.

If, added Kotzias, it was our goal for Cyprus to be a normal state, the other more difficult goal is regarding normal ties. “We are moving together and discussing ways and paths to influence more the players – in terms of foreign relations – that are involved in this procedure,” said the Greek minister.

The Cypriot minister said that the Cyprus government took note of statements by Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan that Turkey will never abandon its European target. “As the Cypriot democracy, we hope for progress in ties between Brussels with Ankara, and we hope that the Turkish president’s statement will translate into specific steps in this direction,” he said.

In regards to Turkey submitting maps outlining the EEZ and the continental shelf that ignore areas that belong to Greece and Cyprus, the Greek minister said that Turkey has submitted to the United Nations an answer to Greece. “These positions are wrong but Turkey is trying in every way, to legalize its illegal demands, because, as I have said, it is trying to legalise its moves,” said the Greek minister.

“International justice cannot be caught up in such plans,” he added.