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Athens News Agency: News in English, 06-01-17

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] FM spokesman outlines Athens' position on EU-Turkey ties, other foreign policy issues
  • [02] Development ministry hosts exhibition on Democritos research centre

  • [01] FM spokesman outlines Athens' position on EU-Turkey ties, other foreign policy issues

    The foreign ministry's chief spokesman on Tuesday outlined many of Athens' standing foreign policy positions in an address to a large group of visiting Greek expatriate youths from Latin America, where he underlined that Greece not only creates security, peace and stability for its own people, but for the entire region.

    In response to a question regarding Turkey's closely watched European orientation, spokesman George Koumoutsakos noted that &quot;we are doing everything possible to be on friendly terms, but there are certain particularities ... we must provide the opportunity for results of Turkey's policy to surface in the 10 years, minimum, that its course towards (EU) accession will last. However, we are not extending carte blanche.&quot;

    Koumoutsakos reminded that a clear-cut framework of conditions that Turkey must meet have been laid out by the Union for the first time, as he cited good-neighbourly relations, respect for minorities and religious rights, as well as Ankara's stance vis-à-vis the Cyprus issue.

    &quot;It (Turkey's course towards the Union) will be long and difficult, but I believe that in the end we will have a positive outcome,&quot; he said, adding that all of the Balkan countries should have the opportunity to be part of the EU.

    &quot;...because such a prospect would leave behind a past filled with conflicts and help the region. The same applies to Turkey,&quot; the spokesman said.

    Asked about the 16-year issue still preventing a full normalisation of relations with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), namely, the &quot;name issue&quot;, Koumoutsakos merely noted that moderation was needed to find a mutually acceptable solution, &quot;something we're doing within the framework of the United Nations and the European Union in order to achieve stability in the region.

    &quot;Patience and persistence are necessary; conditions for creating new hostilities should be avoided,&quot; he added.

    In terms of Greece's position in the eastern Mediterranean and its proximity to the Middle East, Koumoutsakos reiterated that Athens has traditionally good relations with both the Arab world and Israel.

    As per the Palestinian issue, specifically, he repeated Athens' position of two secure states in the region living peacefully side by side.

    In terms of the international fight against terrorism, Koumoutsakos said the purpose of such a collective effort is to protect human life and dignity, &quot;although the battle against terrorism cannot be aimed at religions or civilisations&quot;.

    &quot;The added value of Greece's foreign policy is our sincere belief in the principles of democracy, peace and stability,&quot; he concluded.

    [02] Development ministry hosts exhibition on Democritos research centre

    Development Minister Dimitris Sioufas on Tuesday inaugurated an exhibition at the ministry on the work of the Democritos National Centre for Research in the Physical Sciences, along with Democritos president Dr. D. Niarchos and Research and Technology General Secretary Ioannis Tsoukalas.

    The exhibition will run until February 3 and will be open to the public on weekdays between 9:00 and 15:00 and forms part of a development ministry programme to inform the general public on the work done by agencies under its supervision.

    Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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