Kotzias: “We have a multidimensional foreign policy of a ‘West-East bridge'”

Kotzias: “We have a multidimensional foreign policy of a ‘West-East bridge'”

Athens, December 7, 2015/Independent Balkan News Agency

By Spiros Sideris

Athens follows a “multi-dimensional foreign policy seeking to become a bridge between the East and the West”, said foreign minister Nikos Kotzias, stressing that the greek foreign policy has taken “one step forward despite the financial problems”. “They accuse us of being pro-American, pro-Russian, pro-Jewish”, he said, adding that when “there is no constructive criticism, there is unsubstantiated nonsense”.

“The foreign policy of the country has authorities and aims to provide a bridge of cooperation between the West and the East and expand our economic and geostrategic potential”, emphasized the foreign minister.

“Greece supports without ‘buts’ the creation of a Palestinian state”, he continued and said that on December 21 the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will visit Athens and expressed the hope that the Greek Parliament will recognise Palestine.

“Thanks to this multidimensional policy we were accepted in Iran as true friends with millennia common and turbulent history. We started the engine for the development of economic, cultural and social relations. Indeed at the beginning of next year is expected in Iran the prime minister Alexis Tsipras, who has in Tehran, as in all the capitals I have visited, great prestige and popularity”, said the foreign minister.

“I know that many have a problem with the multidimensional policy. When they see with the Americans tell us friends of the Americans. The next day in Moscow they call us friends of the Russians. We go to China, they call us friends of the Chinese” Kotzias said. “A certain domestic criticism on our action is like tasteless fairy tales, where the bad and ignorant dragon flies by himself directly from Israel to Iran. You see, when there is no constructive criticism, there is unsubstantiated nonsense”, he continued.

“The fact that we were able to have good relations simultaneously with countries that are opposed, even in rivalry, is the result of the active, multidimensional foreign policy that we are applying, stated the foreign minister and noted that “we have good relations both with Russia, as was seen by the recent announcements of my counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, and with the US, as was seen by yesterday’s interview with John Kerry”. “In order to prevent any misunderstandings, we strongly rejected any thought of the involvement of Greece in military operations in Syria, or our participation in something like that through NATO”, the FM clarified.

The foreign minister then referred to the initiatives taken by the country in defence of religious and cultural communities in the Middle East, and announced the establishment of an international forum-Observatory of the rights of those communities and their support.

As regards relations with Turkey, he emphasised the need for the violations of the greek airspace and territorial waters to stop.

Referring to relations with Albania, Kotzias stood in favour of a renewed friendship agreement which safeguards the rights of the Greek minority.

On the Cyprus issue, the foreign minister advocated a solution which would be in line with European Law, without permanent differences of the four fundamental freedoms, and in favour of the suppression of the system of securities, the withdrawal of the occupation troops and the creating of a security system of the Republic of Cyprus.

“We are proceeding not only in the reactivation of the Romania-Bulgaria-Greece axis, which was rightly promoted by previous governments, we are designing and implementing the creation of an alliance of several EU member states with regard to internal developments in the EU itself”, he said and concluded: “We are making efforts so that the EU rediscovers its values ​​and principles. That adhesive substance that can keep it together on a democratic and socially just course. Against the current neo-liberal dogmatism”.