Defence Min Apostolakis’ message to Ankara to respect international legitimacy
Defence Minister Evangelos Apostolakis during his speech at the official dinner of the 35th Congress of the World Coordination Committee of the Cyprus Struggle (PSEKA) in Washington stressed Greece’s greater stabilisation role in the geopolitically sensitive area of the Balkans and the Southeast Mediterranean.
“Greece’s firm policy and desire is the peaceful coexistence with its neighbors on the basis of international law, current treaties and legitimacy. Amid these unpredictable challenges, Greece remains at the forefront and has proved to be a pillar of stability and a security provider in the Eastern Mediterranean, the Balkans and beyond,” Apostolakis said.
The Greek minister, who is paying an official visit to the US capital, has met with a series of deputies and senators in Congress. During his speech at the Committee, Apostolakis sent a message to Turkey regarding the respect for international legitimacy while emphasising the importance that Greece attributes to defense cooperation with the US as well as its NATO commitments.
Message to Turkey
Sending a clear message to Turkey, the minister noted that he has called on Ankara to refrain from further unilateral actions violating International Law and undermining stability and prosperity in the region. In fact, he stressed the need to respect the sovereign rights of the Republic of Cyprus within its Exclusive Economic Zone.
However, he expressed concern about Turkey’s recent unlawful actions related to this issue, saying that our country has a “difficult neighbour.”
Apostolakis underlined that the more active US participation in the regional cooperation defence sends a firm and clear message.
“I would like to underline the importance of Secretary of State Michael Pompeo’s participation in the recent tripartite summit of Greece, Israel and Cyprus. Strategic cooperation with the United States, coupled with our commitment to NATO, is a defensive priority for us. In this respect, by investing in our long-term friendship, we are increasing the dynamics and new aspects of our outstanding military relations,” Apostolakis said.