Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias will travel to Izmir on Tuesday 4 September 2018, to attend the reopening ceremony of the renovated Consulate of Greece in the coastal city of Western Turkey.
The ceremony for its reopening was to be held on March 2, but the arrest of the two Greek officers in Edirne postponed the ceremony, as Greek FM Nikos Kotzias decided not to go to Turkey while the two Greek servicemen were being detained.
The September 4 ceremony takes on even greater significance because the Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu will attend, according to his own statement exclusively made to IBNA exclusively, on the sidelines of the two-day Gymnich (meeting) in Vienna where he also participated.
Due to the Turkish official’s heavy schedule, his stay in Izmir will be short, as he himself clarified, and will include a working lunch with his Greek counterpart Nikos Kotzias in a city hotel. Around 11:30 they will attend the planned ceremony of the renovated Greek Consulate.
According to IBNA’s exclusive information, the two Foreign ministers will discuss bilateral issues, the European perspective of Turkey and the new perspective towards this direction, the Cyprus issue as there was a meeting between Mevlut Cavusoglu and Nikos Christodoulides in Vienna, to determine the agenda for the meetings to be held in New York in the context of the UN General Assembly Week of 24-28 September 2018. The visit of UN Secretary-General Lute’s Special Envoy, which will have discussions with all the parties involved, Greece, Great Britain and Turkey, will also be decisive for the developments, as Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides noted in his own exclusive interview with IBNA.
The prime objective of the Greek and Greek Cypriot sides, with whom the Turkish one agrees, is that before any process of resuming the dialogue on the Cyprus issue begins, there will be a first agreement between the guarantor powers for the guarantees and the removal of the armed forces from the island of Cyprus, so that the discussions of the two communities on their individual disputes can proceed.
Greek and Turkish Foreign Ministers will also shape the agenda of the New York talks as expected, according to the information so far, also regarding the meeting of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan with Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.
The Ambassador of Greece to Ankara Petros Mavroidis will attend the ceremony for the reopening of the renovated Consulate of Greece hosted by Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias. The Greek diplomat’s contribution, in co-operation with his political chief, Nikos Kotzias, to the release of the two Greek soldiers who were being detained for five and a half months in Edirne’s prison after they were arrested on March 1st because they had entered the Turkish territory illegally.
Historical background of the Greek Consulate in Izmir
The Consulate of Greece in Izmir was declared inappropriate for use and closed in 2003 to be renovated with funding from the Greek state and be given back for use when ready again. For more than 12 years there has been no effort to renovate the it. However, the building began being rebuilt after Alexis Tsipras took power, with Nikos Kotzias at the helm of the Greek Foreign ministry, and now the work has been completed.
The building was the home of Emmanuel Kapetanakis or Apergis, one of the few Greek houses on the waterfront of Izmir that were saved from the devastating fire of 1922, during the persecution of the Greeks.
The building is located on the historic waterfront of Izmir, in Alsancak, on Ataturk Caddesi No.262 and is a typical example of a local residence’s architecture and was bequeathed to the Greek state in 1948 by the Greek merchant Emmanuel Apergis or Kapetanakis who lived abroad. It was a short distance from the “Izmir Theater”, which was completely destroyed in September 1922…. / IBNA
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