Greek-Turkish Relations
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Fidan on Greek-Turkish relations: ''Positive agenda but also attention at the rights of the 'expatriates' in Thrace and the Dodecanese''

Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan referred to Greek-Turkish relations and the Cyprus problem during his speech at the Turkish National Assembly, in the context of the debate on the State Budget.

"We wish to advance our relations with our neighbour Greece on the basis of a positive agenda and through a sincere and constructive dialogue. The recent visit of our President was a concrete expression of this approach," the Turkish minister said, adding: "We continue to defend at every opportunity the rights of our expatriates residing in Western Thrace and the Dodecanese."

Referring to the Cyprus problem, Hakan Fidan reiterated the Turkish position on the sovereign equality of Turkish Cypriots in order to resume negotiations: "Our ultimate goal is to find a just, lasting and viable solution to the Cyprus problem based on the reality on the island. As long as the sovereignty status of the two sides is not equalized, it is not possible to start negotiations between the parties. We will resolutely continue our efforts for the recognition of the "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus" and the development of its relations with other countries."

Finally, the Turkish Foreign Minister referred to Turkey's relations with the Balkan countries: "We see the Balkans, of which we are a part, as a region where peace, stability and prosperity can be promoted together. The historical and humanitarian ties between us are the main elements that distinguish us from other actors in the Balkans. In this context, we are determined to maintain our unshakeable ties and presence in the Balkans."

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