File Photo: Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias. APE-MPE, ALEXANDROS VLAXOS
Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias made it clear that there was no understanding or advance discussion with the Turkish side on the Imia issue, in an interview with public broadcaster ERT.
- “There is no capability on the part of any Greek minister to have consultations on this level with the Turkish side. It is outside the scope of the current exchange of views,” he explained, speaking on an ERT programme late on Thursday, with regard to Erdogan’s statement that the Turkish side has sent a message to Athens so as to avoid generating tensions in the area around the Imia islets this year.
- Dendias also sent the message that the Greek government cannot accept that any part of Greek territory will be “rendered grey”. He underlined that the red line of every Greek prime minister, naturally including Kyriakos Mitsotakis and his government, is to defend the constitutionally guaranteed rights of the Greek state. “I have vowed to protect the Constitution and the laws,” he said.
On the possibility of recourse to the International Court of Justice at The Hague, the foreign minister said that Greece’s sole dispute with Turkey is the boundary of the continental shelf in the first place and, by extension as the international Law of the Sea has changed, delimitating the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). “Initially, we should try to solve it between us, and if we fail to resolve it between us, we will draw up a compromis [agreement to resort to international arbitration] to describe our problem, he said.
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