Russian ambassador Maslov: Greece is a reliable partner for Russia

Russian ambassador to Athens Andrey Maslov described Greece “as a reliable partner”, denying press reports that ties between the two countries are at a low point, in comments to journalists on Tuesday.

There is a positive dynamic in Greek-Russian ties despite there being a general cold war waged against Russia, the ambassador said.

“They are hitting us from all sides and this is not our choice. This climate cannot influence our traditional ties,” he said.

Turning to business ties between the two nations, the Russian ambassador said that one million Russian tourists are expected to visit Greece this year, up from 900,000 people in last year.

Questioned on whether Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan discussed in their recent meeting the two Greek soldiers detained by Turkish authorities, Maslov said that “he was not present at the talks. I am not aware of what they spoke about.”

He also ruled out a military conflict arising in the Aegean between Greece and Turkey. “I cannot imagine a war between countries that are part of the North Atlantic Treaty,” he said.