Problems with Turkey could be solved with goodwill, Greek PM Mitsotakis says

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Wednesday said Turkey and Greece could overcome their disputes with goodwill, following the meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on the sidelines of NATO meeting in London, Greek Reporter said.

“I would like to assure the Greek people that difficulties in our relationship with Turkey have always existed, still exist, and will exist. But I believe that as long as both sides show goodwill, these difficulties can be overcome,” Mitsotakis said.

Tensions are soaring between Turkey, Greece and Cyprus over drilling for offshore gas. Ankara claims some of what Nicosia sees as its exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and is demanding Turkish Cypriots in the breakaway north of the island get a share of the revenue from any deposits.

And the recent Turkey-Libya memorandum of understanding on maritime zones in the East Mediterranean further complicated matters in the volatile region.

“I raised all the issues emerging from the latest Turkish acts, and disagreements on either side were recorded,” Greek Prime Minister said.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded the north in response to a Greek Cypriot coup aiming to unite the island with Greece. 

Since then, the internationally recognised Republic of Cyprus has controlled the southern two-thirds of the island, and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, only recognised by Turkey, the northern third.