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Greece: “Negotiations only when Turkish ships withdraw from Greek continental shelf”

“Negotiations with Turkey can be held as soon as Turkish ships withdraw from the Greek continental shelf” Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias reiterated Greece ‘s position while in New York for a meeting with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Friday.

Dendias briefed Guterres on Turkey’s provocations against peace and regional stability in the Aegean and the eastern Mediterranean.

The minister told Guterres about the Greece-Egypt agreement on the demarcation of maritime zones, the Cyprus issue.

He delivered a letter from Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis to the Secretary-General that presents and documents Ankara’s illegal activities. He requested that the letter be forwarded to the president of the Security Council.

“ Greece has made it clear that negotiations with Turkey can take place as soon as Turkish ships withdraw from the Greek continental shelf, not as long as they remain there,” he posted on Twitter.

He stressed that “recoursing to the Security Council is always the right of any member of the UN, and therefore of Greece. But when and under what conditions this possibility should be used is a matter to be decided under the circumstances of the moment.”

Also Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis sent a clear message about the terms of the dialogue with Turkey.

“In addition to Turkey’s aggression, Greece also faces actions that dispute every rule in the United Nations charter. Greece has never hidden that, along with its rights, it always defends good neighbour relations. I consider diplomacy the flip side of my country’s strength,” he said.

The prime minister stressed that out of the many provocative comments made by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, he will keep only the one that refers to starting dialogue.

Mitsotakis said “I respond to it with six clear words: The provocations stop, the talks begin.”

He underlined that Greece can and wants to discuss the delimitation of its maritime zones in the Aegean, in the Eastern Mediterranean on the basis on international law but without being subjected to blackmail or an assault on reason.

“Let the threats stop, therefore, so that talks can begin,” Mitsatakis underlined.

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