The Turkish research vessel Oruç Reis returned to Antalya, without renewing the Turkish NAVTEX, which was issued on the 31st of August. The Greek Prime Minister has commented that fact positively.
The Greek PM, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, spoke at a press conference today at the Thessaloniki International Fair and stressed, “The return of Oruç Reis to Antalya is a positive first step. I really hope this first step be followed by others. If there are steps towards this direction, Greece is ready to start a new cycle of exploratory contacts with Turkey.” “Greece has strong alliances and dialogue is the only way. “Dialogue that takes place in good faith is the main way to deal with the only problem we have, which is the delimitation of maritime zones,” he added.
“The new armaments programme is ambitious, but within the country’s economic potential,” Mitsotakis explained. He also stressed that the approach was different as some significant investments are made, but it was recognised that the armed forces were above all the human resources and for this reason, 15 thousand people would be recruited in the following five years.
“Rafales will replace the older Mirage 2000,” he said and added that our forecast and there was hope that the first aircraft would arrive in Greece in the middle of 2021 and that the procedure would be completed by the beginning of 2022 at the latest.
“The stance I take today is a token of my goodwill to discuss in good faith with Turkey,” he stressed. He added that the context, in which the discussions would take place, would be determined by experienced negotiators.
“The Greek side never added oil to the fire,” he stressed. He added that he chose not to play the game of verbal escalation and that he would continue to do so. “We pursued active diplomacy, we built new alliances, and we brought Europe along with us,” he pointed out.