Greek-Turkish Relations
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The Turkish "red lines" in the negotiations with Greece and the Cyprus "trap"

Greek-Turkish relations have entered a new phase, after the devastating earthquakes in the neighbouring country and especially after the recent NATO summit in Lithuania, where Erdogan finally accepted Sweden's entry into the Alliance, without however bringing the issue to the Turkish parliament for approval until today.


The "mobility" in the Greek-Turkish-Cypriot issue

All this created the appropriate background for Mitsotakis and Erdogan to come together, while a little earlier, a proposal for EU intervention to resolve the Cyprus problem had been put on the table by German Chancellor Solts on the part of Cypriot President Christodoulides, with the name of former Chancellor Merkel "playing" for the position of the Union's mediator.

Finally, we had Erdogan's visit to the occupied territories immediately after his election, where he reiterated once again the two-state position as the only solution to the Cyprus problem and the Greek Prime Minister's recent visit to Cyprus, wanting to calibrate the President of the Republic of Cyprus' ambitions -red lines on the Cyprus problem and the drawing of a unified line on this burning issue.

Recently, we even had statements by Erdogan and Turkish Foreign Minister Fidan, where they outlined the Turkish red lines of the negotiations with Greece and Cyprus

No step back from Turkey

In a related article, Turkish media reports that, "The latest statements by President Erdogan and Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan were widely reported in the Greek media. The headline "No step back" was used in the news, drawing attention to Turkey's 3 red lines," noting:

"Greece follows every step Turkey takes. The Greek press focused on the statements of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan. It wrote a caption "No step back".

Minister Fidan, at the 14th Ambassadors' Conference at the Presidential Complex, said:

"We wish to improve our relations with all countries in our region through a positive agenda. We believe that the current positive atmosphere offers a great opportunity to find solutions to conflicting issues with our neighbour Greece; we are sincere in this regard. We hope that the Greek side will show the same sincerity.

The three (3) Red Lines of Turkey

Minister Fidan said: "Our national cause, our stance on Cyprus is clear. Ensuring the sovereign equality and equal international status of Turkish Cypriots is our basic policy. We will continue to protect our rights and interests in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean with sensitivity." 

Greek daily ETHNOS reported that Minister Fidan said that the cornerstone in resolving contentious issues is a positive atmosphere.

Stressing the sovereign equality of Turkish Cypriots, the news was headlined "No step back for Ankara in Aegean, Mediterranean and Cyprus".

In another report, it was noted that President Erdogan, in his remarks after the cabinet meeting, stressed that Turkey did not leave its relatives in Cyprus to tyrants.

The news on CNN Greece drew attention to Minister Fidan's words.

Referring to Greek-Turkish relations, he recalled that he said "We will continue to protect our interests in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean."


The statement of Greek Foreign Minister Gerapetritis on Egyptian television

Speaking on Egyptian television, Greek Foreign Minister Gerapetritis touched on Greek-Turkish relations.

Stating that Athens stands by Turkey's side on its path to Europe, the Greek minister said that "we are ready to cooperate with Turkey to facilitate the steps to be taken in Cyprus."

Stating that there are many steps that need to be taken in Cyprus, Gerapetritis said, "We should all consider that there are complex issues that need to be addressed. As you know, there are important issues regarding Cyprus. We are ready to work with Turkey to facilitate these steps."

Stressing the need for political dialogue for peace in the region, the Greek Foreign Minister said.

Noting that he has developed a good channel of communication with Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan, the Greek minister said: "What we really want to do is to promote a positive agenda with common interests such as trade, economy, civil defence, tourism, general development. of the two countries and then work on our relations."


Erdogan at this stage and until the end of the tourist season at least will not take any aggressive action in the Aegean, for economic reasons and for armament reasons, since this would definitively remove Turkey from the purchase of the American F-16 BLOCK-70, which it ardently wishes to implement.

However, the Turkish defence industry, despite the economic crisis that the country is going through, has not at all interrupted its frenetic effort to produce weapons systems-means and ammunition, showing Ankara's real intentions in case of a shipwreck of the purchase of the F-16 BLOCK-70 from the US, while we recall that Erdogan has not yet brought the issue of Sweden's membership in NATO to the Turkish parliament for a vote.

We believe that the course of the Greek-Turkish dialogue depends almost entirely on the course of the above two important issues, while both Erdogan and the Foreign Minister of Fidan will not step back from their firm positions on the Cyprus problem (2 states) and from serving their interests in the Aegean and the South-Eastern Mediterranean (Blue Homeland).


We believe that there is a risk of Ankara trying to co-exploit Cyprus gas in cooperation with the EU and Cyprus, without a resolution of the Cyprus problem. 

The issues are too delicate and need very skilful handling and decisions, as in our assessment the Cyprus issue should not be closely combined with the Greek-Turkish issues, apart from the issue of the delimitation of the Greek continental shelf - EEZ east of Rhodes in the area of the Kastelorizo complex with the Turkish one, Turkey's European perspective and the exploitability of hydrocarbons from the marine areas of the Cypriot EEZ.

In our opinion, it would be a mistake to "package" the Cyprus settlement process and any "apparent" Turkish concession in the Megalongaion with Turkish claims in the Aegean and the Greek-Turkish dialogue, thus leading to a withdrawal of our firm positions in the Archipelago.

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