Tsipras: Of historical importance the meeting in Izmir

Tsipras: Of historical importance the meeting in Izmir

Athens, March 8, 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency

By Spiros Sideris

In Smyrna is transferred the negotiation on the refugee issue, as was pointed out by Alexis Tsipras at the end of the Extraordinary Meeting of the EU with Turkey on Monday in Brussels.

In Smyrna Alexis Tsipras and his Turkish counterpart Ahmet Davutoglu, will chair the 4th Supreme Greece-Turkey Cooperation Council. The agenda of the 4th Chief of Greek-Turkish Cooperation Council includes mainly issues concerning transport, trade and tourism. In this framework there is expected to be an agreement on the ferry link between Thessaloniki and Izmir, as well as the railway link between Thessaloniki and Istanbul. In parallel, It will take place the Greek-Turkish Business Forum that will bring together 36 Greek enterprises and institutions, mainly from the fields of tourism and real estate, food and beverages, construction and building materials, transport and logistics.

According to government sources, the interest of the Turkish side in regard to imports from Greece, as is depicted by the requested meetings, is focused on building materials, and in relation to Turkish investments in Greece, tourism and real estate.

The Greek Government delegation will be comprised by the ministers: G. Stathakis, N. Kotzias, P. Skourletis Th. Dritsas, N. Toskas, G. Mouzalas, E. Kountoura, O. Gerovasili, G. Amanatidis and D. Mardas.

Apart from the agreed agenda, the two prime ministers after yesterday’s contacts between the EU and Turkey, will further discuss the refugee issues together. It will be a historic meeting between the two countries in which will be signed the rapid readmission Agreement of migrants between the two countries, A. Tsipras said.

The Greek premier informed the prime minister of the Netherlands and president of the Council Mark Rutte, on the realisation of the Greek-Turkish Council. On his part, M. Rutte described the meeting in Izmir as particularly important and even stressed to his Greek counterpart that at this meeting he represents not only Greece but the EU as well.

In his statements after the summit in Brussels, A. Tsipras said that it is extremely important that the Summit shifted the discussion framework from unilateral moves that would close the Balkan route isolating refugees in Greece, to finding an effective solution in cooperation with Turkey.

“Turkey came with tempting proposals, to many people’s surprise. These proposals raised as a condition some trade-offs, which could not be decided today, because not all states were ready and some of the trade-offs were excessive and should be put back into a meaningful dialogue”, the prime minister added.

On his part, Ahmet Davutoglu said that we do not demand money. We must be helped to combat the crisis. We never demanded more than what we received. We demand an equitable sharing of the humanitarian crisis. Europe and Turkey are not responsible for it. ISIS and Russia are responsible. We will be the shelter of all victims of war, the ISIS victims, the bombings of Russia and the regime. We defend human rights.

I am grateful to Tusk and Merkel, but also to all political leaders who were here, as we had constructive talks. We discussed how to solve the Syrian problem. We spoke with NATO for its presence to our borders and the protection of Turkey against any threat. On the 18th we will meet again and we hope to make reality the goals we put today”, said from Brussels the Turkish prime minister.