Developments in the Eastern Mediterranean have been rapid and constant movements are being recorded, as Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias is on visits to Libya, Egypt and Cyprus, while the Greek Prime Minister’s Office announced the signing of the Transnational Agreement between Greece, Cyprus and Israel on the EastMed pipeline.
According to the communication by Maximos Mansion, on January 2, 2020 Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, alongside the President of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades and the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will sign a Transnational Agreement on the EastMed pipeline, which will be completed with the signature of Italy.
A statement penned from the Presidency of the Republic of Cyprus confirmed that Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades will be travelling to Athens on 2 January 2020.
On Friday, the US President signed the bill on the “Eastern Mediterranean Security and Energy Partnership” EastMed Act, making it a provision of the US law. The law includes strategies to improve security and co-operation with countries in the Eastern Mediterranean, including Israel, the Republic of Cyprus and Greece, lifting the arms embargo in Cyprus and banning the transfer of F-35s to Turkey.
After the announcement about the signing of the Transnational Agreement, Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias visited Benghazi in Libya on Sunday morning, where he met with the head of the Libyan National Army Lieutenant General Khalifa Haftar. The Special Representative of the Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Libya, Ambassador Christodoulos Lazaris, also participated in the meeting. Nikos Dendias also had the chance to speak with the President of the Libyan House of Representatives Aguilah Saleh Issa, who had visited Athens back on December 12. Their discussions revolved around the situation in Libya and the prospects for resolving the crisis. Nikos Dendias raised the issue of the two non-existent agreements signed between Turkey and the Tripoli government, unfolding the Greek positions and highlighting the fact that the content of these texts completely contradicts International Law and International Law of the Sea.
Nikos Dendias, commenting on his meeting with Khalifa Haftar, noted that “I was very pleased to hear his positions, which coincide with ours on this issue, namely the absolute nullity of these memoranda and how harmful they are to the people and society of Libya and, of course, to the stability in the region”.
He further emphasized the need for a political solution to be reached to the Libyan crisis in the context of the efforts initiated by the UN Special Representative for Libya Ghassan Salame, while also focusing on the Berlin meeting. Greece, according to the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs, is looking forward to an inclusive process that will meet the expectations of the entire Libyan people.
Subsequently, the Greek Foreign Minister visited Cairo, where he met with his counterpart Sameh Shoukry. Nikos Dendias and his Egyptian counterpart talked about the results of his morning visit to Libya, but also about the contacts he had in the Gulf last week with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Jordan.
Nicos Dendias arrived in Larnaca late Sunday afternoon, where he met with the Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides whom he briefed on his latest contacts and developments. /ibna