Greece is a pillar of stability in the Southeastern Mediterranean and steadily spends over 2 percent of its GDP on its defence needs. As it emerges stronger from the economic crisis of the previous decade, it is ready to make higher investments in its military capacity and show itself even better able to comply with its obligations to the Alliance,” Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis underlined at his arrival at the NATO Summit in Brussels on Monday.
Mitsotakis noted that the Summit was an opportuntity for the Alliance to reaffirm the EuroAtlantic institutions, which he said had been tested in recent years, adding that the member-states must reaffirm their respect for the values, principles and unity of the Alliance.
“NATO is today facing extremely complex challenges, which require a re-adjustment of its strategy. The coronavirus proved how vulnerable our societies can be to a virus that is not visible to the naked eye. Climate change has not only social and economic repercussions but also affects security issues as it encourages migration flows. Authoritarian regimes, also, develop their hybrid arsenal in order to weaken our democratic institutions. To all these things, NATO’s 2030 agenda has comprehensive answers,” Mitsotakis underlined.
Μitsotakis meets Albanian PM Edi Rama
Greek-Albanian relations and the European course of the Western Balkans – for which Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis reiterated Greece’s steadfast support – were the focus of a meeting between the Greek premier and Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama before the start of NATO’s Summit in Brussels.
The two premiers agreed that after the general elections in Albania, the two countries are ready to speed up negotiations on an arbitration agreement for reaching a settlement on the delimitation of their respective maritime zones via the International Court of Justice at The Hague.
Government sources said that Rama thanked the prime minister for the free offer of 20,000 vaccines that were delivered on Monday to Albania.
On his part, Mitsotakis reiterated Greece’s timeless and steadfast interest in the ethnic Greek minority in southern Albania, as well as Albania’s progress in the fields of human rights and rule of law, which are among the prerequisites EU has demanded from Albania for progress in its accession talks.
Finally, Mitsotakis congratulated Rama on Albania’s election as non-permanent member of the UN Security Council in 2022-2023.
PM Mitsotakis and UK counterpart Boris Johnson meet on NATO summit sidelines
Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis had a meeting with United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Monday, before the start of the NATO Summit in Brussels. Mitsotakis briefed him on the improving epidemiological picture in Greece, expressing the view that this permits a lifting of restrictions for British tourists visiting the country on holiday, while asking that the UK not discriminate between different European countries.
The Greek prime minister also briefed Johnson on recent developments in Greek-Turkish relations and stressed the need for the de-escalation in tension so as to establish trust and allow dialogue. With respect to the Cyprus issue, he underlined that the next steps for a resumption of talks can be agreed only within the given framework, which is binding for all the parties involved, of the UN Security Council resolutions calling for a bizonal, bicommunal federation.
The two prime minister also examined the implementation of the EU-UK withdrawal agreement, including the Irish Protocol and the good prospects for the Alliance via the NATO 2030 agenda.
Finally, Mitsotakis thanked his UK counterpart for the invitation to attend the leaders’ summit at the 26th UN Climate Change Conference (COP-26) taking place in Glasgow in November 2021, which he accepted.