Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias chaired a meeting on the developments in Turkey

Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias chaired a meeting on the developments in Turkey following the failed coup attempt and safety in the region. Greece unequivocally condemned the coup attempt in Turkey during this meeting on Sunday, and it was stated that Greece defends the rule of law and the democracy in Turkey.

The need to show restraint was also discussed, including necessary measures that need to be taken to prevent the escalation of the violence and to protect the human lives and restore the calmness in the region.

Finally, it was underlined that Greece is keeping the lines of communication open for the benefit of bilateral cooperation with Turkey for peace and stability in the region.

Earlier, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras had telephone contact with Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The Turkish leader thanked the Greek government for its stand against the attempted military coup in his country.

Tsipras told Erdogan that democratic values and respect for Constitutional law are a matter of principle for the Greek nation. He reaffirmed the belief that there was no room for coups in democracies, adding that the Greek government respects the elected government of Turkey.

Tsipras stressed that “whatever necessary” would be done to ensure the extradition of the eight military officials who had fled to Greece in a Turkish helicopter after the coup was quashed. He gave assurances that the processing of the request for political asylum will be as brief as possible, however in accordance with international law and human rights agreements.

The attempted coup took place in Turkey late on Friday but was suppressed several hours later. 265 people were killed and thousands injured.